Dried Sea Cucumber


Chinese name: 海参 (hǎishēn/hoi2sum1)
What are dried sea cucumbers?
Sea cucumbers are echinoderms and are harvested from all around the world.
Commercial dried sea cucumber is produced from fresh sea cucumber, after washing, their internal organs are removed, followed by boiling down, and drying process to preserve it.
Meaningful delicacy
Literal translation of 海参 means “ocean ginseng” or “ginseng of the sea” because its therapeutic effect is comparable to the ground ginseng.
To the Chinese it is considered one of the big 海味.
Dried sea cucumber is delicacy that has many healing properties.
Chinese like to enjoy this delicacy on festive occasions. Same as abalone and shark’s fin, sea cucumber is a main dish fit to impress guests at dinner.
For Cantonese people it is auspicious because its phonetically similarity to 開心 (kāixīn), which means “happiness”.
Sea cucumbers are usually braised in sauce and served as one of the main dishes in a course. It can also be added with other ingredients to make a healing soup.