Obsessives: Seaweed

By Meredith Arthur and Eric Slatkin

Meet John and Barbara Stephens-Lewallen: They harvest seaweed. Operators of the Mendocino Sea Vegetable Company in Philo, California, the Stephens-Lewallens are farmers/fishermen of another stripe. Their catch includes bladderwrack, sea lettuce, kombu, and nori.

The couple reveals the culinary delights of seaweed tea and fried seaweed. And Chef Eric Tucker of Millennium Restaurant demonstrates what someone can do with a little sea palm.

This is a regular series called Obsessives, in which CHOW explores the worlds of singularly focused food-industry figures. These are the people with the dirty hands, answering detailed questions about the work they do.

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