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88

The salt adds flavor, but it also helps reduce the gelation of the starch in the pasta. The starch in food is the form of microscopic grains. When these grains come into contact with water, they will trap some of it (think cornstarch in cold water), but when the water is hot they swell up like balloons and merge with each other, and you have starch ...


28

The notion that salt or spices specifically don't scale linearly sounds like nonsense to me. In any recipe involving salt and water, the salt is dissolved, so all that matters is the concentration, and that concentration is going to be the same with linear scaling. Scaling in general is problematic when scaling more than 2x or 4x. When you take into ...


26

As Kosher salt goes there is also a difference in the types. Many chefs (myself included) recommend and prefer Diamond Crystal brand Kosher salt. Diamond Crystal (owned by Cargill) uses a patented process of producing salt known as the Alberger Process. In in the interest of keeping the explanation simple, essentially it creates flat salt crystals with a ...


25

Determine correct ratio of food to salt. Add more food until proper ratio is achieved. Or just serve extra beer with it.


25

Trying to get to the bottom of the issue, I decided to take a few pictures of a few different types of salt. The pictures shown below were taken by me and are all proportional (the camera was the same distance away from each type of salt, so you are getting an accurate size comparison). The picture illustrates my suspicions, which is the difference is the ...


22

Salt is perhaps the most basic and effective flavour enhancer, and so it's fairly obvious why we have it on our dinner tables. The popularity of pepper is down to the Romans, who were crazy about it. Thanks to the longevity of the Roman Empire, pepper was imported for hundreds of years, helping to establish it as the most popular spice, and keeping the ...


21

I sometimes add a bit of lemon juice... works to a degree.


21

Definitely don't rinse the salt off. One of the nice things the salt does is pull juices to the surface of the meat--not enough to dry things out, but enough so that when the steak hits the hot pan you have a nice protein-laden coating (it's called a pellicle when talking about smoked fish--not sure about steaks) on the outside to caramelize. If you rinse ...


18

Salt has unique properties in how it interacts with the taste buds. While it has its own "flavor" it also has the ability to enhance some flavors while blocking your ability to experience others. While I could go on, all I would be doing is repeating much of what I learned watching The Food Network's Alton Brown. He goes in depth for the episode "The ...


18

Soften. Other things that typically are added with salt will tend to toughen the beans, but it isn't the fault of the salt. For decades, chefs have circulated the oral tradition that adding salt hardens beans, but it's a myth. Several scientific studies verify that adding salt to the soaking water for dried beans will reduce the cooking times. The first ...


17

Taste-wise there will be little to not difference in the result. Just be careful to use the proper ratio of garlic to salt (generally 3-to-1 salt to garlic powder).


17

I can say, as a salt snob, that sea salt is a far more flavorful product. I can't even use regular table salt anymore. Sea salt is salt formed from evaporated sea water, is not iodized, and because it doesn't come from salt mines requires very little processing. Some people will say that because it's "natural", sea salt must be better for you. The mayo ...


16

Our taste buds are tuned for salt (NaCl), but potassium chloride (KCl) comes pretty close in reproducing the sensation. There are a few commercial salt substitutes that incorporate KCl (Nu-salt, Morton Salt Substitute in the US). As sodium is an essential mineral and potassium may be hard to get out of the body, make sure you ask a doctor before completely ...


15

Slice a raw potato and add it to the over-salted sauce. As it cooks it'll draw in the salty liquid. You may need to add more liquids to keep the sauce from drying out.


15

It means that the pasta is seasoned as it is cooked. To see if this matters to you, cook up some pasta in plain water and then some in salted water and see if you can taste the difference.


15

While Erlenmeyer flasks and graduated cylinders and food-science may not be able to save your leftovers, adding some cooked rice with fried egg (basically any fried rice recipe) will likely crowd out the saltiness of the base dish as well as extend your leftovers.


15

Summary for the Quick Reader Only the shape and size of the grains really makes a difference. Otherwise, salt is salt. What makes a difference between salts? There are only two real differentiators between different types of salt (assuming the product is essentially just salt, and not a seasoning blend): The mineral or other impurities resulting from ...


15

Depending on brand, it is approximately 1 1/4 tsp per pound (US), or a little more than 1/4 tsp per stick (4 oz). For most applications, yes it is fine to substitute and adjust; you can just adjust the "salt to taste" step of your recipe in many cases. There are a very few uses (such as yeast raised dough) where you want to be more precise. I would not ...


14

I don't know how well a substitution will work in this case, because I don't know how the salt is being used in the recipe. If you're mixing the salt into something where it will dissolve, then go ahead and substitute, using the chart that @ManiacZX linked to. If you're mixing it into cold things, and it doesn't sit for very long, I'd go with a finer salt ...


14

Salt serves two primary purposes in baking: To regulate yeast Salt kills yeast. The addition of salt to a yeast leavened dough prevents the little beasties from growing completely out of control. To enhance and mask specific flavors Salt is almost a universal flavor enhancer. Virtually anything that tastes good, will taste better with salt. What ...


14

In a Good eats episode from the 13th season (The Ballad of Salty and Sweet), Alton Brown explains how salt (specifically the sodium) blocks your tongue's taste buds from sensing bitterness. Sweetness however is not blocked. It also is known to enhance other flavours. Salt on chocolate is awesome for example. Salt also has the ability to still taste salty ...


14

You may have luck just tossing them in popcorn salt. Popcorn salt is ground much finer than regular salt, and should stick to the surface much easier than the larger grains in table salt or kosher salt. If you don't have popcorn salt, you can start with kosher salt and pulverize it into a fine powder in a food processor, spice/coffee grinder, or mortar and ...


13

Salt in high concentrations can kill yeast yes. So can sugar, though salt is so much better at it. You see both are hygroscopic, meaning that they suck water out of stuff. This induces osmotic stress to the yeast cells leading eventually to cell breakdown (aka death). On lower concentrations salt will throttle the yeast fermentation producing a richer and ...


13

A few general reasons: As soegaard says, the salt is often better distributed through the food if it's added during cooking. This is especially true for foods which have been carefully assembled; you can't always just stir things up! Some foods also take a while for flavors to soak through; think about potatoes in a chunky soup. If you add salt only at the ...


12

Peter Martin at Chef Talk suggests adding sugar or cider vinegar. He also mentions the old potato trick but says it's not effective for him unless it's only slightly too salty.


12

Good practice is to under-season food when cooking and adjust the seasoning at the end if necessary. It's very difficult to fix over-seasoned food at the end of cooking, and excess salt is also bad for your health.


12

I've noticed that salty food has somewhat of an addictive quality; people who eat a lot of it (i.e. fast food or other processed food) tend to bury their meals under a mountain of salt, whereas people such as myself who do a lot of home cooking hardly use (or want) any. "Season to taste" means pretty much what it sounds like; add however much salt (and ...


12

Salting food has a predictable trajectory. Think of it like a roller-coaster. /\ At first it's not great, then it's great, then it's not great again. Food with no salt will taste one-dimensional and flat. The flavors will not "pop". Add a little salt and the taste of a dish will start to both integrate and become more complex. With the perfect ...



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