3 Surprising Super Powers of Salt
Let’s settle it: salt is more than just a seasoning. While you can definitely “add salt to taste”, this superstar ingredient can do more than adding salty flavors into a dish. Indeed, there is a reason why it is a staple in everyone’s kitchen. So if you want to try more recipes with salt, try out these three ways to tap into the power of salt!
1. Improve the Texture of Food
Salt is a vital ingredient that can actually transform the texture of certain food. The Spruce Eats (thespruceeats.com) indicates that the amount of salt used in yeast bread influences the rate of yeast fermentation and gluten formation. These are two processes that are critical in shaping the final texture of the baked product. Salt is also important in processing meat products because it aids in the gelatinization of proteins and in moisture retention.
2. Make the Meat and Poultry Tender
You can definitely make meat tender by submerging it in a brine solution, which is composed of salt and water. But there is also a traditional Chinese dish, called Hakka Salt-Baked Chicken, in which a whole chicken is cooked while fully submerged in salt! Despite the amount of salt used, you’ll be able to savor all the flavor profiles of the ingredients. Most importantly, you’ll be able to taste the juiciness of the meat with each bite.
The Viandd (theviandd.wordpress.com/) states that you can cook this dish by using a rice cooker! Many people prefer to cook Hakka Salt-Baked Chicken using rice cookers because it can simplify the process without compromising the flavors and the tenderness of the meat! We Know Rice (weknowrice.com) emphasizes that this kitchen tool can fulfill multiple functions and features, such as steaming veggies, fish, and meat, so it will definitely come in handy when you want to make this and many other dishes. You will just need to coat the chicken inside out with salt, chicken stock powder, and sesame oil before stuffing it with spring onions and ginger. Afterwards, you can add oil and ginger to the rice cooker before steaming the chicken.
Salt also works magic on steak too. When used in the right proportions and at the right times, it can help your steak be crispy on the outside and tender on the inside. To learn more about this technique, check out SalterieOne's article Sea Salt + Time = Steak Perfection.
3. Reduce Sourness and Enhance Sweetness of Food
It may sound surprising, but salt can definitely be used to manipulate other flavors. Serious Eats (seriouseats.com) points out that salt actually inhibits our perception of bitterness. Because of this, many people actually prefer adding salt to their coffee to neutralize its bitterness. It’s also one of the main reasons why salt is ingested before drinking bitter alcoholic drinks, like margaritas or tequila shots.
Moreover, salt’s ability to reduce bitterness also enhances your ability to perceive sweetness. Our feature on the North Blend here on SalterieOne (salterieone.com) highlights that you can use this sweet and salty combination to reduce the bitterness and enhance the sweetness of grapefruits. You may also add this to bring out the sweetness of a warm French Toast or even a bowl of healthy oatmeal! Moreover, our North Blend contains hints of cinnamon, organic maple sugar, and orange peel, which makes it the perfect flavor enhancer for your morning coffee to your baked desserts.
Salt is more than just a seasoning product! It can transform any dish by improving its texture, making tough meat tender, and even by balancing flavor profiles.
Written by Khaye Aliyah Leggett
Exclusive for salterieone.com