Tuesday, May 10, 2016

Try stone soup - “poor man’s delicacy.”


Dr Abe V Rotor
 Living with Nature - School on Blog [avrotor.blogspot.com]
Paaralang Bayan sa Himpapawid (People's School-on-Air) with Ms Melly C Tenorio
738 DZRB AM Band, 8 to 9 evening class, Monday to Friday [www.pbs.gov.ph]

Stone covered with green algae (lumot); microscopic structure of lumot (50x).

 This is one for the Book of Guinness.

Along the pristine shallow shores of the sea, lakes and rivers, you will find stones coated with living algae. Along coral reefs the algae growing on these stones are mainly Enteromorpha, and a host of juvenile seaweeds, while those in freshwater the dominant algae are Chlorella and Nostoc, all commonly called lumot. These are edible species listed in books in phycology, the study of algae.


Now there are two ways old folks prepare the soup from these algae-rich stones. The stones are roasted or charcoal or under low fire to bring out the aroma, and then dropped simmering in a waiting bowl of water complete with tomato, onion and a dash of salt.


The other method follows the traditional way of cooking of broth, with the addition of vegetables - and even fish or meat. The recipe is rich in calcium because of the calcareous nature of the stones, especially those gathered in coral reefs.


Try stone soup; it's good for the bones. And it's a good piece of friendly conversation. One summer I started a lecture at one o'clock in the afternoon with "Have you tried stone soup?"

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