You might have been under the impression that raw food diets are very limiting, but it’s actually quite the opposite. Just because you’re on a raw food diet, that doesn’t mean you can’t eat mayonnaise, ice cream, or lemon meringue pie – all recipes, which are traditionally made with whipped egg whites to give them a thick, creamy consistency. There are substitutes for just about every ingredient you can think of, and raw food dieters can use Irish Moss make desserts that satisfy their sweet tooth, or to give their sauces and condiments some added thickness.
Irish Moss is a type of seaweed that grows in cold water. It has no distinctive color and no taste, but provides a lot of fiber, protein, trace minerals and nutrients, making it the perfect addition to any raw food diet. Irish Moss has been used for centuries in Ireland, but is thought to grow in other parts of the world as well.
Commercially packaged, processed foods like ice creams and syrups often contain an ingredient called carrageenan gum. Though derived from Irish Moss, it is heated, concentrated and processed into chemical form, causing it to lose the nutritional value of Irish Moss. In fact, carrageenan gum can be a hazard to your health. Consuming it is nothing like consuming the carrageenan found in pure Irish Moss, which has many health benefits.
Irish Moss is most often used in raw desserts to create a gel-like or mousse like consistency for parts of certain recipes. A very versatile ingredient, it can be used in place of eggs or corn starch to:
• Give juices and smoothies a creamier consistency.
• Create a firm or mousse like texture in desserts.
• Substitute for oil in salad dressings to reduce the amount of fat consumed.
• Give sauces a thicker texture.
• Reduce the amount of nuts used in cheeses.
• Give soup stocks a thicker texture.
• Make homemade mayonnaise (without the eggs, of course).
In order to use Irish Moss in your raw food recipes, you must prepare it into a paste first. To do so, rinse the dry moss under cold water, taking care to remove all traces of sand, stones, seaweed and other impurities. This is very important, as failing to properly clean your Irish Moss will result in a fishy taste in your desserts. We all know that desserts and fish don’t go well together. After rinsing, cover the Irish Moss completely with water and soak in an airtight container for at least 3 hours before use. The moss is ready when it has nearly doubled in size and has a creamy white color.
Blend the Irish Moss and water together until the moss breaks down into a very creamy consistency – almost like a smooth paste. The paste can be stored in the refrigerator in a glass jar for up to 10 days. When you’re ready to use it, simply follow your recipe and add
the rest of the ingredients as directed.
Irish Moss adds versatility to any raw food diet. Just when you thought you’d be limited to certain foods, this healthful, thickening agent opens up the door to a whole new line of raw