How to Prepare Dried Sea Cucumber


Sea cucumbers, a saltwater echinoderm like starfish and sea urchins, are a prized ingredients in Chinese cuisine, on par with shark's fin, bird's nest and abalone. A rare delicacy, you don't come across fresh sea cucumbers often unless you harvest them yourself, but you can find the dried varieties in Asian markets and specialty foods stores. Dried sea cucumbers must be reconstituted. After they are restored to their spongy selves, thinly slice them and add them to stir fries or braise them in stock or sauce until tender.

Things You'll Need

  • Chicken or fish stock, dashi or Chinese supreme stock
  • Rinse the dried sea cucumbers under cool water and set them into the bottom of a pot. Cover them with 3 or 4 inches of boiling stock. Let the cucumbers reach room temperature and cover the pot.

  • Soak the sea cucumbers for 2 to 3 days in the refrigerator, until they feel spongy.

  • Change the stock each day. Drain the sea cucumbers and rinse them after they have nearly doubled in size.

  • Cut a lengthwise slit through the flat bottom of the sea cucumber and rinse the cavity with cold water. Clear any sand, using your fingers.

  • Slice the sea cucumbers into the desired-sized pieces -- 1/4-inch slices for stir fries and sauteing; 1/2- to 3/4-inch slices for braising.

  • Simmer the sea cucumbers in water with sliced ginger until they feel springy, about 30 to 45 minutes. Drain the cucumbers and pat them dry.

Tips & Warnings

  • You can leave the sea cucumbers whole, but slicing shortens the time it takes to tenderize them.

Related Searches


  • Photo Credit xin wang/iStock/Getty Images
Promoted By Zergnet


You May Also Like

  • How to Prepare Cucumbers for Pickling

    Before you pickle those fresh cucumbers, you need to take a few minutes to prepare for the pickling process. The steps below...

  • How to Make Cucumber Kimchi

    Kimchi is one of the most common foods in Korea. This healthy staple can be prepared many ways, such as this tasty...

  • How to Process Sea Cucumber Alum

    Traditionally, sea cucumbers were processed by boiling, sand-scouring and sun-drying. The use of smoking and alum treatment was added to the process...

  • How to Soak Cucumbers

    While it is not always necessary -- especially if you use the freshest, just-picked cucumbers -- soaking your cucumbers before you pickle...

  • How to Cook Sea Cucumber

    Tips for cooking frozen and dried sea cucumber, as well as seasoning recommendations and pairing ideas. Serving tips are covered.

Related Searches

Check It Out

13 Delicious Thanksgiving Sides That'll Make Turkey Insignificant

Is DIY in your DNA? Become part of our maker community.
Submit Your Work!