Carrageen moss is a seaweed that grows around the coasts of Ireland and is a popular ingredient in many recipes both traditional and contemporary.
There are numerous beneficial qualities to this seaweed. (Click here to read about them), and one of the most traditional ways to use this is as a remedy for 'flu and chest infections/coughs.
What you need:
Carrageen moss (approx. 10g)
Water (approx. 700ml)
Whole lemon (1)
Cloves (approx 3)
Honey (to taste)
What you do:
- Prepare seaweed by soaking for half an hour in water and then thoroughly washing under running water removing any roots
- Put the carrageen moss into a pot with water and boil.
- Add juice of 1 lemon together with the rind (basically whole thing but separated) and cloves
- Cover and simmer for half an hour
- Strain and add honey to taste
Coincidentally I had an upper respiratory tract infection and chesty cough when making this so made the trying of it all the more authentic. Unfortunately my taste and smell senses would have been compromised some what.
Initially I was struck by the smell when it was boiling, it brought me to the seaside with the unique algal smell and I was a bit anxious after what happened with the crubeens. My mother immediately recognised it even though the last time she had it was as a very small child.
The drink was very palatable. I never really liked hot lemon and honey but this I did like. Initially there is the seaweed taste, which is not horrible followed by the lemony tones neither of which are too overpowering. I happily drank 2 full mugs of the stuff but would probably use more Carrageen moss or less water next time for a stronger taste (so it seems more like medicine!). I can't say I was cured since it takes a sustained barrage of doses morning noon and night to be effective and 50g costs 3.30 (euros) so I would not really be tempted to use it nowadays whenever I get a sniffle. Still if I am ever stuck near the Irish coast in summer with no hope of getting to the chemist to treat my cough, I'm laughing!