Suizenji Nori


Suizenji nori (Suizenji nori)

***** Location: Japan
***** Season: All Summer
***** Category: Plant



Suizenji-nori 水前寺のり / 水前寺海苔
an edible blue-green alga (cyanobacterium)
suizenji 水前寺(すいぜんじ)
shikon nori 紫金苔(しこんのり)"purple golden nori"
jusen nori 寿泉苔 "nori from the well of long life"
akizuki nori 秋月苔(あきづきのり) "autumn moon nori"

Aphanothece sacrum
Aphanothece sacrum (Suringar) Okada
スイゼンジノリ / ずいぜんじのり

a kind of blue algae that grows in fresh water 水生藍藻
It is now a natural treasure 天然記念物指定.

Along the upper regions of the river Koganegawa, along about 500 meters, water is divided into small shallow rivulets, where the alga grow on especially planted grass. They need a lot of mineral in the water and a temperature of about 18 - 20 degrees centigrade.
Most of it floats in the water as small black pieces, until it catches some grass to grow larger. It is rather wobbely and jelly-like when harvested.

It was allowed to be harvested by the lord of Akatsuki Domain, who gave a written report to a family in Asakura, which still harvests and produces it in the traditional way by hand. So it has a tradition of more than 250 years.

About one kilo of the mashed laver is spread on earthen tiles, about 1 cm thick, and let dry naturally. After that the rather flat pieces are now put on wooden planks, smothered with a bit of water into perfect shape (about A4 sixe plates) and let dry again.

Before eating, it can be put into water to gain back its thickness.

Put in soup or as tsukudani, it is a welcome source of minerals.

Suizenji Nori Salad with sanbaizu vinegar or Tosa Vinegar.


dating back to the Hosokawa lord of old domain of Bingo 肥後細川藩

100 grams of dried nori contain
21,8 g protein
1200 mg calcium
68,8 mg iron
1,39 mg vitamin B1
1m38 mg vitamin B2


Photo from Kisendo 喜泉堂

Fukuoka prefecture, Koganegawa, Asakura town
River Koganegawa belonged to the former domain of Akitsuki han 秋月藩.

The nori have been found near the temple Suizen-Ji 水前寺 at lake Ezuko 江津湖.
These sweet-water nori are the first plants to bring oxygen to the earth in early times.

They are black when swimming in the water and contain two color components
青色のフィコシアニン green phycocyanin
赤色のフィコエリスリン red phycoerythrin


Worldwide use


Things found on the way


suimono wa mazu dekasareshi Suizenji

the soup
was served first -
temple Suizenji

Matsuo Basho
On his trip to Higo Kumamoto, where he was eager to savor the nori, which were already famous in his days.
Soup is usually served at the end of a meal, or sometimes eaten during a banquet. Basho found it amazing to get the soup first when he wrote his haiku about it.

More hokku about food by
. Matsuo Basho 松尾芭蕉 - Archives of the WKD .

Related words

***** egonori 恵古苔 (えごのり) egonori laver
egoten えごてん jelly made from egonori
ego konnyaku えごこんにゃく konnyaku made from egonori
okiuto おきうと "okiuto weed"

It grows in Hakata bay and is a local souvenier. It has been collected by woman divers (ama) of the Genkai Sea for more than 200 years. Local people eat it with soy sauce for breakfast.
It is low in calories and became a popular diet food in recent years.

. . . CLICK here for Photos !


***** . Seaweed (kaisoo) Japan Including laver (nori),  

***** WASHOKU :



1 comment:

facebook said...

Yummy and gummy... and green (I also mean this in the modern sense). Gabi san, thank you.