Friday, September 17, 2010

Expensive ass salt (and worth it).

I've been meaning to get some real sea salts for some time, the cool deli in my neighborhood now stocks this, Sel de Guerande aux Herbes. I would've skipped the herbs but it was all they had so I thought I would give it a try. The reason I've been interested in these salts is because they contain trace minerals that cheap processed salts don't have, minerals we tend to lack in our modern diets (read the Eades' book for more about this). Another reason is that they are just just plain cool. And it occurs to me that artisan salts make a great gift. I'm terrible at giving gifts, but hand harvested salt is a useful and interesting item (unless your friends happen to think salt is unhealthy, in which case you should ditch them or at least get them to read this takedown of the anti-salt "research" by Gary Taubes).

The French are apparently quite fond of these unprocessed sea salts and it probably is another factor (along with moderate alcohol intake and lots of SFAs) in the "French paradox" which of course is not a paradox at all.

How does it taste? Well, because of the herbs it tastes a lot like bullion. There is something of bitter edge, that is not necessarily unpleasant, which I assume comes from the trace minerals lacking in cheapo table salt. Sel de Guerande is supposed to be a 'finishing salt', meaning that one is supposed to use it after cooking. Whatever. I've mostly used it in soups rather like I would use bullion. Interesting stuff, and I look forward to trying more of these. The darker and more mineral infused the better. This black Hawaiian sea salt and this Hawaiian red salt are high up on the list.

As far as the price goes, this stuff is like a hundred times more expensive than cheap table salt, I purchased this for around 8 bucks (169 Czech crowns), but how long does it take to use up 250 grams of salt? I'm something of cheapskate but I think this stuff is definitely worth it.

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