Salt has been used as a flavoring agent and a preservative for centuries. Today even though its use as a preservative has decreased due to the invention of modern refrigerator’s, its use as a flavor enhancer is still as popular as ever.
Most of the salt available at the supermarket has been mined and processed to the point that it all has the same texture and flavor. This can get kind of boring, sure you can buy sea salt but even that has been processed to the point that it is basically the same as the mined variety.
Today there are a few varieties of salt available that has not been heavily processed and can give your dishes a unique flavor that common table salt can not offer you. Here is a list of 7 exotic salts from around the world that can offer you new and different flavors to cook with. These interesting and unique salts will provide you with flavors and textures that your dinner guests are sure to love.
HIMALAYAN PINK SALT
Mined from the Himalayan Mountains by hand, this salt is famous for its pink color. The color ranges from light pink to deep red and it gets its unique pink color from 84 trace minerals and iron that is in the salt.
Since this salt has not been processed like common table salt, it is rich in trace minerals. Himalayan pink salt is harder then sea salt and has a nice crunch to it.
HAWAIIAN RED SEA SALT
Also called alaea, this sea salt is made in Hawaii by adding volcanic baked red clay, which contains iron oxide, to the salt during the evaporation process giving it a unique red color. This is another variety that is loaded with trace minerals.
HAWAIIAN BLACK SEA SALT
Similar to the alaea, the black stuff is made by adding activated charcoal instead of red clay. This gives it a deep, rich flavor that is perfect for a wide range of dishes and a unique black color that is different from the common sodium varieties.
Sel gris is produced by hand using traditional wooden Celtic methods giving it a moist and crystalline consistency. Since it is naturally moist, it is not suitable for grinders, but it is great for rubs and for fresh fruits and vegetables.
Made in France, this is yet another variety of salt that has not been processed and therefore is loaded with trace minerals including iodine. One of the benefits to this variety is the fact that it is lower in sodium having only around 85% sodium chloride content.
PERSIAN BLUE DIAMOND SALT
A very rare variety of salt, this variety is naturally blue in color. It gets its color during the formation of the crystalline structures because the crystals are formed under extreme pressure. This causes the light to bend in a unique way giving it the blue color that it is famous for.
Persian blue starts out with an intense flavor, but it almost immediately milder with a nice aftertaste. Persian blue is among the rarest salts known. It is mined from the northern province of Semman in Persia.
Kala namak is pinkish gray in color and has a scent that is similar to hard-boiled eggs due to its high sulfur content. It also has a distinct egg flavor which can be used to give food a nice egg flavor. Mined from the Himalayan Mountains, it is used in a variety of Indian dishes. Kala namak doesn’t increase the amount of sodium in the blood, therefore it is ideal for those who have high blood pressure and need to limit their sodium intake.
Produced in Italy from the low waters of the Mediterranean Sea, Italian sea salt is made by filling the salt pans with sea water and allowing it to dry out naturally. Once dry, sale marino is ground without any further refining. Sale marino has a delicate flavor and can be used for a variety of tasks such as meat rubs, sauces, or it can be used as a garnish.