While seaweed may seem like an unusual choice for stuffing, I am really loving the umami it adds. And for any custard recipe, sea greens can provide an extra depth of flavor!

For me, exploring new ways that I can use seaweed in my cooking is also how I can contribute to healthier oceans, while feeding those I love.

Seaweeds like wakame, kombu, and dulse are packed with nutrients like omega-3s, fiber, and iodine, but also have the potential to improve the water quality of our oceans and sequester carbon.

So who else is going to join me to do a sea-inspired twist on holiday stuffing?

And for this stuffing recipe, you can also add bacon for a heartier dish if desired!

Serves 6

  • 3 cups brioche (preferably day-old), cut into 1/2-inch cubes
  • 2 tablespoons unsalted butter, divided, plus more for greasing dish
  • 2 cups rehydrated seaweeds such as wakame, kombu, or dulse and chopped
  • Kosher salt and freshly ground pepper
  • 2 teaspoons fresh thyme
  • 2 leeks (white and light-green parts only) split lengthwise and sliced (about 4 cups)
  • 2 ½ cups low-sodium chicken broth
  • 4 large eggs, lightly beaten
  • ½ cup half and half
  • 2 tablespoons chopped flat-leaf parsley

Preheat oven to 250°F. Butter a 3-quart baking dish. Place cubed bread on a baking sheet and bake until slightly dry, 10 to 15 minutes.

Raise oven temperature to 350°F. In a large sauté pan over high heat, melt 1 tablespoon of butter. Add the seaweeds, and season with salt and pepper. Cook, tossing occasionally, until it has released the liquid. Scrape into a medium bowl and set aside, reserving the pan.

Return pan to medium heat and melt the remaining 1 tablespoon of butter. Add the thyme and leeks. Cook until very soft, about 5 minutes more. Return the seaweed to the pan, add broth, and bring to a simmer. Season to taste with salt and pepper. In a small bowl, combine the eggs and half and half. Transfer to a large bowl and let it cool slightly. Add cubed bread and egg mixture and toss until the mixture is combined.

Transfer bread mixture to baking dish. Bake in the center of the oven until golden brown and slightly puffed, 35 to 40 minutes. Top with parsley and serve immediately.

Got more seaweed on hand? Try this Seaweed & Lemon Brined Chicken!