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One of the oldest foods in the world, salt is not as much a flavour in itself as it is an enhancer, bringing out the flavors in all kinds of foods. It makes noodles, watermelon, meat, and all other kinds of food taste richer and generally better.
Humans crave salt as it has the chemicals we need to survive in the ionic compound composed of sodium and chlorine.
Salt is harvested from ocean water, and now increasingly from salt mines, like the Himalayan Pink Salt mine called Khewra in Pakistan. Salt is mined much like coal, with explosives and excavations.
All salt is essentially sodium chloride, and it originates from the oceans and seas, even when it is harvested from caves. Salt is a mineral and if no anti-caking agents are added to it, is sometimes labeled as organic, which is not accurate as it isn’t an organically grown substance.
Drying the ocean or sea water is a universal way of extracting sea salt, though the french method of retaining some moisture gives it a softer consistency.
Sea salt is also harvested from ponds and is generally from the bottom depths known as oeillets. The french method prefers harvesting from the surface, with some variants having larger crystals.
A dried variant of sea-salt, hawaiian salt is dried using lava beds, giving it a brick-like (red Hawaiian salt) or darker (black Hawaiian Salt) color.
Charcoal is also added to normal sea salt to produce the same effect, and a similar color does not guarantee a similar process of extraction.
The standard cubic crystal salt is known as table salt, with the small and even crystals making it flow from the container easily.
This popular salt may have added anti-caking agents like silicon dioxide or dextrose so that the salt is not clumpy. Iodine is generally added to table salt, and according to medical science, is an important nutrient.
A non-iodine salt, Kosher salt is of a larger and fluffier shape, which makes it stick to the food it is sprinkled on and detonate it’s flavour. The large crystals of this salt are used to ‘kosher’ meat according to Jewish laws, hence the name.
Many varieties of kosher salt contain a bit of anti-caking agents like yellow prussiate soda, or sodium ferrocyanide (I would skip that!)
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