5 Salts Every Home Cook Should Own
If they want to be worth their salt.
When was the last time that you really put any thought into salt? A salt shaker can be found in almost every kitchen and on nearly every dining table. Salt is an everyday object, and one that’s rarely given a second thought. This wasn’t always the case, though.
Before refrigeration, salt was the chief food preservative, especially for meat. The word salary is derived from the Latin word for salt because it’s what Roman soldiers were paid with. At the time, salt and gold were of nearly equal value. Gandhi famously led thousands of his followers to the seaside in an act of civil disobedience known as the Salt March to protest the British taxation of salt production. As you can see, there’s a long history behind salt. It no longer carries the socio-political weight that it once did, but its importance in cooking can’t be emphasized enough. We’ve compiled a list of what we consider to be the 5 best salts to have on hand in your kitchen. Enjoy.
Coarse kosher salt is a great, everyday cooking salt. Since salt is probably the most important seasoning agent and flavor enhancer in cooking, it’s important to use it thoughtfully and accurately. Too little salt means that your food will be bland; too much salt means your food will be inedible. Coarse salt is larger than fine salt, which means it’s easier to control how much you’re adding to a dish when using your fingers to add pinches and other small amounts.
We highly recommend Diamond Kosher Crystal Salt.
Sea salt in general is desirable because it’s harvested directly from evaporated saltwater, and there’s very minimal processing involved (which isn’t the case with table salt). Fine grain sea salt adds a great final touch to a variety of dishes, from salads to soups to roasted meats and fish.
You can buy some here.
Fleur de sel is hand harvested from coastal salt ponds in France. It’s very delicate and melts gently in the mouth. It’s a great finishing salt for summer vegetables like tomatoes and is often used to add a hint of saltiness to some desserts, like our double chocolate salted caramel cookies.
You can buy it here.
Himalayan Pink salt comes in the form of beautiful, pink, lustrous crystals. It is hand mined from ancient sea salt deposits and is treasured for its culinary, therapeutic, and cosmetic uses. Himalayan Pink salt has a soft, subtle flavor, which makes it an ideal alternative to fine grain sea salt, table salt, or other finishing salts.
You can buy it here.
Smoked sea salt is salt that’s been smoked over wood fires. Some common flavorings include apple wood, hickory, mesquite, and oak. Smoked sea salt tremendously enhances a dish’s character and imparts whatever you’re cooking with a very satisfying smoky taste. It can be used in stews, on eggs, grilled fish, in cocktails, and so forth. Use your imagination liberally when cooking with smoked sea salt.
Buy some for your pantry here.
Published on June 14, 2016