Salt is used for so many different purposes in our food and cooking that it's often hard to decide what type of salt we should use. If you're not sure which one you should be using, learn about each type's advantages and disadvantages. There are also trade-offs depending on your budget and personal preference. These days, the most popular table salt used in homes is probably table salt. Learn about the three main table salts and which one you should use for what.
Sea salt and table salt both come from the same mines, but sea salt tends to be harvested with a lower concentration of minerals than table salt does. Many manufacturers sprinkle sea salt liberally over baked foods and sprinkle unrefined, natural ingredients on pretzels and chips. And yet, paying less for kosher salt doesn't necessarily mean paying less for processed, commercial-grade kosher salt.
Evaporated seawater is the saltiest salt available and was historically harvested from the shorelines of the Pacific Ocean and other bodies of water around the world. The method for harvesting it has changed over the years from the use of boiling the materials up to heavy drilling and even chlorination. Today, most evaporation takes place at sea and is used for everything from traditional sea salt to flea market shopping bags. Evaporated salt contains large amounts of iodine, which is important for baking and seasoning foods because it helps to decrease bacterial growth.
Natural sea salt comes directly from the sea. It is considered to be the purest form of salt on earth. Natural sea salt comes in two forms are organic and inorganic. Organic sea salt is created through processes like sunspots and wind evaporating into the sea, while inorganic sea salt comes from mineral veins within the sea or is extracted by modern means. All-natural sea salt comes from the seafloor, and its removal and treatment before being harvested are some of the things that have made it more expensive over the years.
Sodium chloride (salt) is the main component of table salt. It's a combination of elements that produces sodium ions. Among other elements, sodium chloride is joined together with aluminum, calcium, and potassium. Although it's a common ingredient in table salt, sodium chloride can also be obtained from other sources, such as potassium and from natural sea salts.
Himalayan salt comes from the foothills of the Himalayan Mountains. Unlike table salt, which is mined from rivers and seas, Himalayan salt is processed under very high temperatures in order to obtain the sodium ions. This method of processing makes the salt highly valuable and its price is constantly on the rise. As of the end of 2021, the value of mined Himalayan salt was estimated at over two billion US dollars.
The main differences between sea salt and Himalayan salt are the color, texture, and taste. As they come from the same mines, the differences are purely cosmetic. Color is usually white, although it may be a shade of grey or even brown depending on where it was harvested from.
The salt texture is largely dependent upon what it's made from. Sandy beach salt tends to be coarse and sandy, while ocean mined salt tends to be fine and powdery. Salt, which is produced from evaporating seawater or ocean water is known as marine salt and has a wide range of flavor foods. Salt, which is produced in inland lakes has a gray color and is used for seasoning food items, whereas the mineral inland salt has a color close to that of table salt. Evaporating seawater is salty enough to be used as a flavoring for canned fish and other seafood items, but it's not considered very good for cooking.