Carrageen Irish Moss (Chondrus crispus)
With delicate fronds and a deep pink colour, Irish Moss has a long history in Western cuisine. It is a good gelling agent suited to desserts and savoury dishes alike. It is traditionally used in the treatment of colds. It is harvested by hand where it is cut just above the root to ensure the re-growth of the algae.
Commonly found in the lower shore – sometimes under the large brown seaweeds or in rock pools.
Other Names: Carragheen, Carraigin, Mastocarpus stellatus.
Taste: Slightly sweet with an intense shellfish flavour.
Texture: Has a pleasant bite to it when gently boiled. Smooth, light texture in sauces and jellies.
To rehydrate: Soak in cold water for up to 5mins with a little salt
Salted: Wash salt off thoroughly before use
Fresh: Rinse thoroughly before use
Gel: Simmer in milk or water for around 10-20 mins, strain before use.
For best results, simmer for around 10 mins before eating (no longer than 30 mins) .For a stiff gel it is possible to simmer for a little longer.
Goes well with: Fish and seafood, milk, citrus, vinegar, ginger, honey, foie gra.
Boil/Steam in pasta sauces, with rice/risotto, accompaniment to fish, added to fish pies, stews, patties and croquettes.
Bake use as a bed for baked fish and chowders.
Cold Pickled, added to salads.
Thickener Sauces and soups.
Gel ice cream, jelly, mousse and blancmange.
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