One of the most important ingredients in cookery, and used all over the world, salt really brings out the flavour of almost any food. Food can taste bland without salt, but medical evidence suggests that too much salt can adversely affect people who are at risk from high blood pressure, so it's best to use it in moderation - taste food before reaching for the salt cellar!
Uses: Salt, often along with pepper, is included in almost every savoury dish to enhance the flavour.
It is used in breadmaking to help the rising process and it is included in the cooking water for vegetables to add flavour and help retain the nutrients in the vegetables. A tiny pinch of salt can even be added to sweet dishes such as batters and cakes to concentrate the flavours.
To store: Salt should be stored in an airtight container in a cool dry place. Salt can become damp in a steamy atmosphere and if you find the salt in a salt cellar is clogging together in lumps, add a few grains of rice to the cellar - they will absorb the moisture and allow the salt to run freely.
There are a variety of different types of salt available including:
A blend of ground celery seeds and salt especially used to flavour tomato juice.
Coarse crystal sea salt
Produced by evaporating seawater in France, coarse crystal sea salt can be used in a salt mill or in cooking.
Fine crystal sea salt
Fine crystal sea salt is made in France, by evaporating seawater. It has added anti-caking agents to prevent it from drying out and is popular as a table salt or for use in cooking.
Maldon sea salt
From Maldon in Essex, this is often considered to be the best sea salt available. It has a very strong flavour, which makes it ideal if you are trying to reduce your salt intake, because less is needed. It is sold as flaky crystals and has been produced in Maldon for generations.
Formed from inland lakes or seas, rock salt crystals are quite large and very hard, they are ideal for use in a salt mill.
With added anti-caking agents to prevent it from clogging, this is the classic salt used in salt cellars and to add to recipes.