Best Salt.

Discussion in 'Food & Cooking' started by irishcook, Sep 27, 2013.

  1. irishcook

    irishcook

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    Hi All,

    Had this discussion with a few fellow foodies but wanted your opinion...

    What is the best salt to use to season dishes?

    Ive heard this stuff is the way to go:
    I guess some of you may think i'm crazy but my pallete definitely picks up different types of salt so I would like to best for my cooking.

    Feel free to fire away with the "Salt is salt you crazy fool" rants. Heh heh.

    Cheers!
     
  2. ishbel

    ishbel

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    I only use Maldon or Fleur de Sel.
     
  3. brianshaw

    brianshaw

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    For finishing I like to use Maldon, or a French knock-off if I must.  ;)

    For seasoning when cooking... Morton Kosher.

    For baking... Morton plain granulated.

    I've used Himalayan Pink but don't really find it worthwhile.  Same with Indian Black.
     
  4. cacioepepe

    cacioepepe

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    Same.  I also like finishing meats with sel gris as an alternative to Maldon.  Diamond Crystal is also a restaurant standard.  I find 'boutique' salts bogus, so I won't waste my rants on such silly things.
     
  5. french fries

    french fries

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  6. petalsandcoco

    petalsandcoco

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    FF: I have a bottle of smoked salt. I used it once, you are welcome to have it if you would like it. (bought a few months ago)
     
  7. kaneohegirlinaz

    kaneohegirlinaz

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  8. french fries

    french fries

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    Really? Yeah I guess you don't exactly use that stuff on many things. Probably explains why I've been thinking "I should give it a try one day" for several years but never bought it! 

    /img/vbsmilies/smilies/smile.gif
     
  9. petalsandcoco

    petalsandcoco

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    Maybe I am not using it the right way. But of all the salts in my pantry, that one is a challenge to work with.

    I used it on salmon that one time and the only residual taste left on my tongue was.....how can I explain this ? Like a cigarette in wet astray ....../img/vbsmilies/smilies/frown.gif
     
  10. phatch

    phatch Moderator Staff Member

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    You might have got some mixed with charcoal. It's a common practice in commercial "smoked" salt. 
     
  11. kaneohegirlinaz

    kaneohegirlinaz

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    so phatch, if I wanted to smoke my Hawaiian sea salt, how would I do this?  This sounds interesting,,,
     
  12. phatch

    phatch Moderator Staff Member

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    I've done some in my smoker while smoking other things. It was OK though it is pretty resistant to picking up flavor. It helps to use a fairly coarse salt and mist it VERY LIGHTLY so  the smoke will stick better. 

    I've taken to cheating now.  http://www.spicesetc.com/product/Hickory-Smoke-Powder/Specialty-Seasonings   And mix some of that with my salt. A little cocoa powder for color impact. Works quite well. 
     
  13. kaneohegirlinaz

    kaneohegirlinaz

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    I have been thinking about trying the Americas Test Kitchen recipe for grill smoked salmon, maybe I should put a foil packette of salt in for the 30-40 minutes called for.
     
  14. samwest61

    samwest61

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    These are really top quality, if you can find them in your part of the world.....

     
  15. chrisbelgium

    chrisbelgium

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    I don't think you're crazy at all, but I would put my money on the fact that you're picking up much more the texture of the salt rather than the taste of it, especially when using salts like Maldon or fleur de sel. I use fleur de sel on specific things like on beef or lamb after it's being cut and plated, never in boiling stuff, that makes zero sence imo. My daily salt is fine and coarse sea salt.
     
    Last edited: Sep 28, 2013
  16. mikelm

    mikelm

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    I recently bought some kind of fancy sea salt.  It's a mineral, so it has to be some millions of years old, but... my salt has an expiration date on the package./img/vbsmilies/smilies/crazy.gif/img/vbsmilies/smilies/lol.gif

    Mike   
     
    Last edited: Sep 30, 2013
  17. chefwriter

    chefwriter

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    There is a fascinating book called "Salt: A World History" by Mark Kurlansky. I can't quote from it as I have lost my copy but along with fascinating historical tidbits, he relates that salt was originally sourced from all over the world by a variety of small scale production methods. The refining processes were often crude, resulting in many of the natural minerals being left in the final product, thus giving each salt a unique flavor. Refining processes were eventually developed that removed the impurities and allowed the development of uniform and consistent grain size and the ability to do so on an industrial scale.  The public eventually began to expect clean salt of uniform size and began dismissing other salts as dirty and a clearly inferior product. So the recent interest in "natural" salt is more of a return to the early sourcing and production methods and a renewed acceptance of the presence of minerals in salt as a positive attribute.  

    All of which is to say that it is perhaps more of a personal preference for one salt or another than one being better than the other. 

         Of the history related to salt, the story i found most intriguing is that Mahatma Gandhi became famous for the simple act of picking up salt off a beach as an act of civil disobedience. The British colonial government of India wanted to promote the use and development of a salt mine back home rather than having the natives use local salt. Some communities of coastal Indians made a subsistence living by harvesting salt from nearby beaches. When the British passed a law prohibiting this, the effect was to deny these communities any form of economic activity, essentially dooming them to starvation. Upon hearing of this, Ghandi, then relatively unknown, proceeded to walk hundreds of miles across India for the singular purpose of defying the unjust law, letting his non-violent intentions be known. As news of this potential act of civil disobedience spread, hundreds joined him in his walk to the beach. By the time he arrived, the crowds were enormous and the world press was recording his every move. All he did was to reach down and pick up some salt.The resulting coverage was so embarrassing to the government that the law was repealed, virtually immediately, Ghandi became world famous and civil disobedience spread around the globe. A little salt really can go a long way. 
     
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  18. siduri

    siduri

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    Interesting history, chefwriter - since i come from a family of salt lovers i bought that book for my daughter (as a kid she would eat large grain salt, grain by grain, as a snack).  We have notoriously low blood pressure and my doctor even advised me to eat MORE salt!  

    But yes, salt was money once, ("salary" comes from the word for salt) and it's been controlled by more than one government (in india it was particularly oppressive in a country where so many lived in sub-subsistence conditions) but in Italy, when i first came here, you couldn;t buy salt in the grocery store, but had to buy it in "sale e tabacchi" - salt and tobacco stores, because salt and tobacco were both subject to a special government tax.  You can't grow your own tobacco either. 

    My favorite salt, having tasted many, is TRAPANI - it's not grey or anything - it's white like the others, but tastes better.  Never tasted malden except in the flakey crystals they sell in the uk as finishing salt and the crunchiness is great. 
     
  19. phatch

    phatch Moderator Staff Member

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    All vood items have to have an expiration date by law in the US.
     
  20. petemccracken

    petemccracken

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