WHAT IS SMOKED SALT?
There are several methods to infuse salt with aroma, and one of them uses smoking. Unlike blended salts that use high mineral content ingredients like Hawaiian red clay, wood smoking involves immersing the salt for up to 2 weeks to imbue a savory flavor. These in turn enhance the inherent flavors in the dish while giving them a fiery twist. However classically smoked salt differs from smoke flavored salt where an additive is used to skip the more expensive smoking process. In general coarse and flake salt absorb smoking better then finely ground crystals.
WHERE IS SMOKED SALT FROM?
It can be made anywhere in the world, though the southern U.S.A. in particular is famous for unique smoking woods like mesquite or hickory. Fruitwoods like apple or maple are also excellent choices for cold smoking, though make sure the bark is removed. These types of trees result in a denser wood that, when properly cured, smolders at a slower rate while releasing a “clean” smoke. Softwoods that are richer in sap and moisture release a smoke that doesn’t work as well for smoking.
HOW IS SEA SALT DIFFERENT THEN TABLE SALT?
Traditionally-made salts lack most of the minerals found in naturally made sea salt. And iodine has been traditionally added to help promote thyroid health (which is crucial in a variety of developmental ways). However while sea salt is often promoted as being the healthier option, that really isn’t true. Sea salt can be richer in flavor, but nutritionally is almost identical to table salt.
WHAT RECIPES GO WELL WITH THIS INGREDIENT?
Salt by definition is a flavor enhancing ingredient. So it can safely be added to most foods. Even sweet recipes can benefit from an occasional smoky twist! Check out this recipe for peaches roasted in bourbon and smoked salt.