Gim Gui – Roasted Seaweed

Roasted seaweed or 김구이 gim gui is usually eaten with rice as banchan (side dish) or as snack. I’m sure you’ve seen little packet of salty roasted seaweed sold in supermarket and have even bought and eat it. The funny thing is when I was holidaying in South Korea I was never offered gim gui as side dish.

I know how to roast seaweed. It’s just as simple as placing the seaweed on a pan or open flame but I never find out how to preserve the crispiness because mine will go limp after a couple of minutes. It must be Malaysia’s humidity. Then came Maangchi with her roasted seaweed recipe and now I know how to make the roasted seaweed remain crispy for a long time except when it’s expose to Malaysia’s humidity again.

Roasted Seaweed
Roasted seaweed ~ gim gui!

Let’s cook!

Salt, Oil & Sesame Oil
Salt in a small bowl and cooking oil + sesame oil mixture in another bowl. Place few sheets of paper towel in front of you as a workplace when working on the seaweed.

Spread Oil & Salt Onto Seaweed Sheet
Brush the oil + sesame mixture on the seaweed sheet (1 side only) with a brush. Top with a small sprinkle of salt. Repeat with the remaining 19 seaweed sheets.

Roll Up Seasoned Seaweed
Roll up the seaweed sheets.

Wrap With Paper Towel
Reason for doing this is for the paper towels to soak up the excess oil.

Roast Seaweed On Pan
Heat a large pan with small flame. Place a sheet of seaweed on the pan and leave it for about 5 seconds until the bottom side turn crispy and green. Flip the other side and leave it for 5 seconds.

Roasted Seaweed
Remove from heat and put on a plate. Repeat with the rest of the seaweed sheets.

Roasted Seaweed
Be careful when handling the sheet during roasting. Sometimes the seaweed sheet can curl up.

Roasted Seaweed
My roasted seaweed.

Storage of Roasted Seaweed
Cut them into bite size pieces and serve with rice. You can snack on it just like that too. Store the leftovers in ziplock or airtight container and then freeze it. Take out from freezer whenever you need it.

Roasted Seaweed
Did ya notice my seaweed sheets are not really green after roasting? (unlike Maangchi’s one) Plus it doesn’t taste as nice as store-bought ones. I think it’s because my seaweed sheets are past its best and had oxidize.

Those seaweed sheets which I keep in freezer are crispy and the problem start once I take them out because they will wilt in a couple of minutes (okay I know humidity plays a role). So one thing still left me perplex is that why store-bought seaweed sheet can remain crispy after a long time once the package is open (even in Malaysia’s humidity) but not my homemade roasted seaweed. Must be something they put inside? Hmmm?? Plastic?

Btw, if you store the roasted seaweed in the freezer, make sure to eat it within a month or two or it will go rancid.

Gim Gui – Roasted Seaweed
Adapted from maangchi

20 sheets of gim (seaweed sheets – the type that you use for sushi)
2 tablespoons cooking oil
2 teaspoons sesame oil
1 teaspoon salt

1. Combine cooking oil and sesame oil in a small bowl. In another small bowl, place the salt.

2. Place few sheet of paper towels in front of you so you can work on the seaweed sheets.

3. Put a sheet of seaweed on the paper towel. Using a brush, spread a thin layer of oil + sesame mixture on the seaweed sheet (1 side only). Sprinkle some salt over it.

4. Repeat the same process until all 20 seaweed sheets have been oiled and seasoned with salt.

5. Roll the seasoned seaweed sheets up in the paper towel so that it soaks the excess oil. Leave aside.

6. Heat a large pan (large enough to fit your seaweed sheet) with low heat.

7. Place a sheet of seaweed sheet on the pan. Leave it for about 5 seconds until the bottom turn crispy and green. Flip the other side and leave it for 5 seconds. Remove from heat. Note: The 5 seconds is just a guideline. Adjust according to how hot your pan is.

8. Repeat step 7 until all 20 sheets have been roasted and turn crispy.

9. Cut them into bite size. It’s best eaten with rice or as snack!

10. Keep the remaining roasted seaweed in ziplock or airtight container and freeze it. Take out as needed. No need to thaw.



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  • Reply Robert July 7, 2016 at 7:14 am

    I think the reason yours came out differently is because you didn’t do it exactly the same way the original recipe calls for. I think she left each sheet in the pan, stacking them as they cooked. I also think she probably rolled the paper towel up in the nori, not just around the out side, but I’m not so sure about that one.

    • Reply Che-Cheh July 8, 2016 at 11:33 am

      Hi Robert, I’ve tried Maangchi’s original recipe (stacking them as they cooked) and find that it doesn’t enhance the crispiness (for my case in this humid country) and also it was difficult to cook them in ‘stacking form’ with my limited space pan, therefore I eliminated the step.

  • Reply Kay April 5, 2018 at 9:18 am

    When I tried this, I was concerned about the seaweed going limp, too. I used kimbap sheets and a much smaller pan. For me, stacking them made it easier to flip, since it’s easier to grab and turn than one delicate sheet at a time. I was skeptical about stacking at first, but during the process, I think the heat actually continued to dry out the ones in the middle.

    Haha, I don’t think they add plastic to commercial seasoned seaweed packets, so I’m curious as to why yours went limp so quickly. It might not be the humidity. Maybe the sheets weren’t dry enough or they didn’t have enough oil to saturate and seal the seaweed? I can’t tell from the photos, but they don’t seem that shiny after oiling, and as you mentioned, there wasn’t much color change after roasting. Mine changed almost the instant they touch the hot pan (though this is dependent on temperature and sheet thickness).

    I agree about the taste part. For mine, I know I didn’t add enough salt. But after roasting, I also think kimbap/sushi sheets are too thick. The commercial ones are so thin they’re practically see-through, so I suspect using thinner type sheets might make a difference as well. I’m going to try to find some 파래김/pa rae gim and see if that makes a difference.

    • Reply Che-Cheh April 5, 2018 at 10:46 am

      Hi Kay, hmm I think like you said I didn’t roast the sheets enough (plus stacking them and oiling them enough to seal). They must still have moisture in them, which make them go limp faster when expose to humid environment. I agree with you, the commercial ones are so much thinner. I’m thinking of making them again, as commercial gims has ingredients that are not to my fancy. Some even have MSG! I’ll try with pa rae gim if I can find them. Thanks!

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