Carrageen Moss is a seaweed which can be gathered off the south and west coasts of Ireland. It is rich in iodine and trace elements and is full of natural gelatine. Carrageen means 'little rock' in Gaelic.
- 1 semi-closed fistful (5g) cleaned, well dried Carrageen Moss
- 1 1/2 pints (900ml/3 3/4 cups) milk - use 1/2 and 1/2 in America
- 1 tablespoon (1 American tablespoon + 1 teaspoon) castor sugar
- 1 egg, preferably free range
- 1/2 teaspoon pure vanilla extract or a vanilla pod
Soak the carrageen in tepid water for 10 minutes. Strain off the water and put the carrageen into a saucepan with milk and vanilla pod if using. Bring to the boil and simmer very gently with the lid on for 20 minutes. At that point and not before separate the egg, put the yolk into a bowl, add the sugar and vanilla essence and whisk together for a few seconds, then pour the milk and carrageen moss through a strainer onto the egg yolk mixture whisking all the time. The carrageen will now be swollen and exuding jelly. Rub all this jelly through the strainer and whisk this also into the milk with the sugar, egg yolk and vanilla essence if using. Whisk the egg white stiffly and fold or “fluff” it in gently. It will rise to make a fluffy top. Chill the pudding in the serving dish for several hours until set. Serve chilled with dark soft brown sugar, cream and a fruit compote e.g. poached rhubarb in late spring or plum or apple and blackberry compote in Autumn.
3 tablespoons (4 American tablespoons) cocoa
Proceed as for plain Carrageen. Blend cocoa with a little milk and add to hot, strained Carrageen before adding the egg. Chill well.
Best eaten the next day. Note that double the amount of Carrageen is needed when cocoa is added.