January 27, 2012

The Importance of Salt

To stress the importance of adequately seasoning your food, I would like to refer to a passage in The Elements of Cooking by Michael Ruhlman:

“I was working with Thomas Keller on the proposal for what would become The French Laundry Cookbook.   Relatively new to the world of professional cooking, I asked ‘What’s the most important thing for a cook to know in your kitchen’
He paused, then said, ‘Seasoning.’
‘What do you mean, seasoning?’
‘Salt and pepper.’ He paused again.  ‘Salt, really.’
‘The most important thing for a cook to know is how to salt food?’
‘That’s right,’ he said.
….It is true not just for cooks in professional kitchens, but for all cooks in all kitchens, everywhere: learning to salt food properly is the most important skill you can possess.”

And a quote from Chef Anne Burrell’s Cook Like a Rock Star:

“I’m going to jump right out there and say this: If you don’t cook with salt, you will NEVER be a good cook.  Salt is the flavor enhancer; it makes things taste like what they are…..Salt is nothing to be scared of.  If you cook from scratch with good-quality, fresh ingredients- meaning seasonal produce and high quality meat- and you steer clear of prepared, processed, frozen, canned, and of course fast food, then you can salt your cooking with reckless abandon.”   (Unless of course, you are on a low salt diet for medical reasons!)

I recommend cooking with sea salt or Kosher rock salt (my favorite is Diamond Crystal Kosher Salt).

Salt….it’s the only rock we eat.

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