Crossing the Pacific Ocean for Ararusep
I would cross the Pacific Ocean to have Ararusep, a strain of the seaweed variety known as Caulerpa taxifolia. Prior to my recent visit to my hometown of Baguio City in the Philippines, I had a very special request of my family members: that my first meal upon arrival would include this green, cool, juicy and grape-like delight, harvested fresh from seawater in the lowland towns about an hour’s ride away from Baguio.
I constantly crave for Ararusep which is not available in the U.S. where Caulerpa taxifolia is listed as a federal noxious weed, under the Plant Protection Act. The state of California also prohibits possession of nine different species of Caulerpa. “Noxious” perhaps to other sea creatures, but not to this Homo sapiens.
There is no recipe needed, just fresh and cleaned Ararusep, served with tomatoes and onions. For the carnivores, Ararusep salad goes very well with barbecue pork or chicken, and steamed rice.
There have been a few studies conducted on the health benefits of Ararusep. It is known to alleviate certain conditions including hypertension, heart disease, cancers and diabetes. Now that would make people cross the Pacific Ocean many times over!