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Gourmet Salt Showdown

Kosher Salt vs. Table Salt vs. Sea Salt and More ...

Gourmet Salt Showdown

I am a salt guy - always have been and probably always will be.  Some people like cookies, I prefer chips.  Some people enjoy chocolate for dessert, I like cheese.  My whole life I’ve been using table salt to flavor my food and cooking - but since discovering Kosher salt I will never go back. 

The Difference Between Kosher Salt and Table Salt

Kosher salt has a bigger grain than table salt, and also has a more delicate flavor. (I know…saying salt isn’t as salty sounds ridiculous.) Table salt contains additives that are not allowed in Kosher salt, such as chemicals to prevent clumping. These give table salt a sharp bite whereas Kosher salt has a more pure taste. Because the grains in Kosher salt have a larger diameter, it also sticks better to food than table salt, covering more surface area and ensuring perfect seasoning of your dish. Fortunately for my blood pressure, I also find that Kosher salt is more satisfying and I can actually salt my dishes less.

The Difference Between Sea Salt and Kosher Salt

Sea salt is very much like Kosher salt in texture and size, because it also has a coarser grain. Since sea salt is harvested from ocean water, it also contains other natural minerals that are prized by many chefs for adding extra notes and fineness to cooking. For everyday cooking, I find Kosher salt to be a great fit - especially given the price premium for sea salt (a box of Kosher salt that lasts 3-6 months in our house is only $5). However, for special dishes or if you just want to experiment with something different, give it a try!

Other Gourmet Salts - What the Heck is Himalayan Pink?

And if you're feeling REALLY adventurous, there's a whole range of other specialty salts that are now becoming broadly available in local stores. From pink Himalayan salt - harvested from a special mine in Pakistan - to gray rock salts, you may find these served at fine restaurants or included as part of gourmet gift sets. The novelty of these salts is clearly driving some of their popularity but they are also fun to play with in the kitchen. Like sea salt, they have higher mineral content than standard salts which can contribute unique flavors to many dishes.

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