Salt Baking

Discussion in 'Food & Cooking' started by blue_wolf, Mar 28, 2005.

  1. blue_wolf

    blue_wolf

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    Just wondering if someone knows if this is possible. I want to be able to do salt baking at my restaurant - whole fish, chicken, etc. The only problem is the time it takes, 40 minutes min from everything I've read.

    My question is can you hold a salt baked item without it becoming over done. Or, can it be re-heated to temp while still holding up the quality. Thanks a bunch.

    David
     
  2. apprenticed

    apprenticed

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    Dear Blue Wolf,

    I think this is a great question... as for cooking time, my research as shown upwards of one hour in a half cooking time.

    I will dig further into this question of holding, and get back to you very soon.

    Respect!
     
  3. suzanne

    suzanne

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    The only place I worked that did it, did fish in a very very hot wood-burning oven. I don't think it took as long as 40 minutes, but to keep the time down, you have to use fish under a certain size. Somehow I can't imagine that you could do a whole chicken in a reasonable amount of time.

    As for the overcooking: since the food is completely sealed, it won't dry out. But the carryover will be extensive if you let it sit, so you might have to pull the item from the oven well before it's done. That will take a lot of experimenting, to find the best point and the best size of fish/chicken.

    My advice is: if your customers are not comfortable with waiting for the food to be cooked a la minute, however long it takes, don't try this. I can't think of any time I've seen it done any other way.

    (but maybe others have, so keep listening!)
     
  4. cape chef

    cape chef

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  5. keeperofthegood

    keeperofthegood

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    Hey oh

    Interesting topic. If it was me, I would do it the way blue steak is done here. Ordered in advance! This would have to a premium menu item as well, so a big flourish presenting the dish and somethings "exotic" to go with it as well (maybe a flambed sauce for dipping). I think there are a few reasons people go out to eat. For my family it is as much because we just don't want to do the dishes lol, as it is to try a new food prepared by someone who knows how it is supposed to turn out. I think that a 40 minute to 90 minute wait for dinner would be too much to ask, both of the customer, and of the restaurant that could be making money on guests that are eating and paying instead of guests that are lounging for that period of time.

    I would like to add a question here too. I have seen salt cooked food, and invariably the salt is in physical contact with the food. Now, when I first heard of this, the text I read it in used river mud and grape leaves and fresh mint. Gut the fish, pack the cavety with some mint, wrap the fish in the grape leaves, then encase in the mud, on the coals for 30 to 45 minutes.... the reasoning being that the mud them will come cleanly away from the fish. However, in all the posts and recipies I have seen and read since, I have not encountered this since. WHY? To me this makes a lot of good sence. Grape leaves are readly available in jars, and here in wine country they are also available fresh. I know, the fresh leaves can't be eaten. They need to be boiled in alkali or something first. But that is not a problem, they aren't being eaten, they are only helping protect the meat from being baked stuck to the salt or clay.