Salt is the most basic of seasonings, but it can still be a bit of a mystery. One thing I have learnt is that seasoning is EVERYTHING, it sets you apart from amateur chefs. Salt allows you to create depth in flavour. Many people think that they must only season at the end of a dish, this is not completely wrong but it depends what you are cooking.
Here are some useful salt tips:
- Salt as you go – Most recipes don’t mention adding salt until near the very end, but you’ll get better flavours in your finished dish if you salt as you go.
- But…. You have to time your salting well. If you add salt to vegetables as soon as they hit the pan, the sodium will draw out moisture. (They’ll steam, not brown.) When caramelizing veggies, add salt at the end.
- Although a pinch of salt added to breads and desserts enhances flavours, do not double this ingredient when doubling a recipe.
- If you plan on adding salt to boiling water for pasta or vegetables, wait until the water boils before adding it. Salted water takes longer to boil.
- Adding salt to boiling water when cooking pasta is a must, it stops it from sticking. Do not use olive oil, it floats to the top and is a waste.
- A salted warm dish will not taste as salty when cold because chilling dims salty flavours.
- Salting meat before cooking is imperative. Choose coarse salt. The salt helps emphasize the carmelization of the natural sugars in the meat and helps form the crust that seals in moisture and flavour.
- If you have over salted a liquid dish such as soup, add in a peeled, quartered potato for 15 minutes. Then discard the potato, or eat it as a little treat. This solution will not work in a major over-salting situation.