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Monday, 25 November 2013

How to Conduct a Salt Tasting

Anyone who thinks that salt just tastes "salty" will be in for a surprise as there are so many subtle variations between natural salts from different locations and climates.

Add flavoured salts to the mix, and things get even more interesting...

The best approach is to do a side-by-side comparison.



1. Pick your categories


Try a range of salts to satisfy each sense:

Or concentrate on one sense at a time:
  • The Salt Box has 14 different Fusion salts
  • and 4-5 different smoked salts to sniff.  Blindfolding is optional!

Choose a selection from around the World:

France, Italy, Japan, Hawaii, Cyprus, Bolivia, Himalayan area, India, Australia and the USA all have their own variations. (See the Gourmet Salts dropdown at The Salt Box for each country's selection)

infographic on how to conduct a salt tasting
Infographic on how to conduct a salt-tasting - copyright The Salt Box 2013

2. Select foods to taste


Choose foods that are salt-free so their natural taste doesn't interfere. Try bread with unsalted butter, fruit (yes!) and vegetables such as melon or cucumber, creamy cheeses such as bocconcini, ricotta or mascarpone.

You might want to lay out individual plates, or a shared platter, with rows of small slices of hard-boiled egg, cherry tomatoes, cucumber, bocconcini, and little buttered bread squares.

Salt Tasting Tips:

  • Cleanse your palate between each tasting by eating plain unsalted water crackers and sipping water with a little added lemon juice.
     
  • Put 2 types of salt on one or more types of food to compare the difference.
     
  • The tip of your tongue is most receptive to saltiness.
     
  • It's best to do a tasting when your nose is clear, as your sense of smell greatly affects your sense of taste.
     
  • I suggest you leave the numbing Szechuan Pepper Salt out of tasting sessions, or at least leave it until last!

I'd love to hear from you if you plan to, or have conducted, a tasting. Which foods and salt combinations did you try? Which did you like most and which did you find most surprising?


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