Delicious recipes from the Campo Viejo Tapas Trail: Carrageen moss with strawberry & mint salsa
We spoke to Kate Lawlor, the chef behind the signature dish on the Campo Viejo Tapas trail, and she shared her recipe and inspiration with us.
“For our signature dish we’ve actually created something a little different. It’s sort of an Irish version of a Crema Catalan. We’re in the summer season and strawberries are at the height of their season so their flavour complements the Carageen moss beautifully”, says Lawlor, Head Chef of Fenn’s Quay Restaurant in Cork.
“We try to highlight the best of Irish produce, seaweed is considered a superfood these days and not many people realise you can make a desert out of it.
“We kind of forget that Ireland and Spain have a strong connection with each other food-wise. Of course we enjoy their wine, but we have a similar food ethos, an emphasis on high-quality, local produce. The Spanish have loads of strawberries… the dish has complementary flavours to the fruity Rioja. If you go to any Spanish town they do exactly as we do here, it’s local people enjoying each other’s company around good food and wine and it’s all very relaxed. It’s all about the local restaurant, where people come to get together and talk. We have the same relaxed attitude here, it’s a local restaurant, where you can dress up or dress down, but you’ll always be welcome and the food and wine will always be good.
“We have a lot in common with northern Spain, the Basque region and the hundreds of fishing villages all along their Atlantic coast. The Carrageen moss grows in the Atlantic, so it’s a beautiful way to connect the two cultures.
“In the north of Spain, if you go to San Sebastian you can find rain or you can find sunshine, that’s very familiar to us here in Cork.
“We believe that the menu should be a talking point, whether you’re on a date or you’re in with the family. That’s where the Carrageen moss comes in. It surprises people, not only the idea, but their palates too.”
Carrageen moss with strawberry & mint salsa
Prep Time: 20 minutes plus 30 minutes setting time
75g castor sugar
10g Carrageen moss
½ tsp vanilla extract
200g strawberries (diced)
2 sprigs of mint
1 tablespoon cassis
Instructions - Moss
1. Place all the ingredients in a pot on a medium heat and bring to the boil
2. Then turn down the heat to low and simmer for 10-12 minutes
3. Pass through a sieve and pour mix into 4 martini glasses.
4. Place in a fridge and leave to set for 30 minutes to 1 hour
Instructions – Salsa
1. Dice the strawberries and mix with the cassis and chopped mint
2. Serve on top of the Carrageen moss
No. 5 Fenn’s Quay Restaurant, nestled in an historic terraced building on Sheares Street in Cork City, offers cosy dining for breakfast, lunch and dinner in a welcoming, relaxed atmosphere. The menu offers fresh, simple, and creative dishes from the regions of Ireland with global inspiration. Fenn’s Quay’s wine list offers selections from Italy and New World tastes from California, Australia and emerging wine regions. The dining room ambiance combines stark simplicity with casual contemporary elegance and showcases paintings and metalwork sculptures.
Chef Bio: Head Chef Kate Lawlor
To quote McKenna’s Guide "Her menus are a tribute to her city and country, expressed in dishes that showcase her own skills and those of the artisans she treasures". On taking over the running of Fenn’s Quay Restaurant in 2008, the theme "Cork on a fork with a few spoons from over the border" became the inspiration to begin the next chapter on the Quay. It has been a wonderful journey that really only feels it is still in its early days. Situated behind the Courthouse in Cork's oldest terrace on Sheares Street, their menus are inspired by family, friends and neighbours that also happen to be their customers, suppliers and the wonderful crew that make Fenn’s Quay.