Have you caught on with the recent trend of cooking on a salt block? If you haven’t, maybe it’s time to consider buying one of those pink slabs that line the shelves of many stores.
Made from prehistoric salt crystals, these salt blocks are said to make food taste better and healthier at the same time.
Benefits of Cooking on a Salt Block
Found in ancient salt fields about 200 miles from the Himalayas, the Himalayan pink salt is considered one of the purest forms of salt available to us. These salt crystals form 5,000 feet below the majestic mountain range and are said to be rich in more than 84 minerals including magnesium, copper, iron and potassium.
If you are wondering how cooking on a block of salt can make your food healthier, when it is actually recommended to try and avoid too much salt in our food, here’s what you need to understand:
- Foods cooked on a pink salt block can absorb the minerals present in the salt, to make the food more nutritious.
- These nutrients can help balance pH levels, enhance digestion and even regulate the body’s hydration.
- All the minerals present in the pink salt give it a special flavor, which is infused into the foods cooked and/or served on the block.
- Unlike table salt that can retain high moisture content, the pink salt is less porous and thus has very low moisture retention. This, in turn, helps impart the right saltiness to foods cooked on it.
- The salt block is a natural anti-bacterial surface, which you cannot find on other cooking surfaces.
- These blocks have high-temperature resistance, ability to distribute heat well and can also hold the high temperature for a longer period.
- Apart from hot foods, the salt blocks work well with cold or frozen foods too.
- It can be used to cure raw foods, just make sure you leave it on for the adequate time.
How to use a salt block on different cooking surfaces
Experts who cook on these salt blocks regularly say that the blocks like to be tempered and pampered, especially during the first few uses. The salt block is versatile and can be used on different cooking surfaces as long as you follow the right procedure.
Gas Stove: Salt blocks need to be heated slowly, so place it on low heat and allow it to warm through for about 15 minutes or longer. Increase the temperature in a slow graduation of 10 to 15 minutes and go all the way to high if you plan to sauté your food.
Electric range: If using on an electric stove, make sure you place the salt block on metal rings and not straight on the stovetop. Follow the same process as the gas range to heat up the block.
Grill: For gas grills, use the same concept as a gas stove but for charcoal grills, make sure you don’t place the salt block directly on the coals.
Oven: For cooking in the oven, it is recommended to heat the block on a stovetop or grill and then transfer it into a preheated oven.
Caring for a Himalayan Salt Block
- Allow the salt block to cool completely before cleaning it.
- Do not use soap; use a wet sponge or a soft brush to clean off any stuck-on food.
- Try to cook on the same side every time to increase the lifespan of the salt block.
- Make sure you don’t run it under water: the dryer the salt block stays the longer it will last.
- Dry it with a towel and allow the salt block to sit for at least 24 hours before the next use.
- Store it in an area with low humidity. In case you live in extremely humid conditions, wrap the dried salt block in a towel and place it in a cabinet.
- Don’t add too much oil. If a recipe requires sautéeing, simply brush the block with some oil.
- Just like cast iron skillets, the more you use a salt block, the more seasoned it will get. So, use it frequently for maximum benefits.
Having been introduced to this prehistoric component, would you now consider cooking and serving some of your masterpieces on a block of Himalayan Pink Salt?
(n.d.). Retrieved from https://themeadow.com/pages/guide-to-himalayan-salt-blocks
10 Reasons to Own A Himalayan Salt Block & How To Use It. (2016, April 19). Retrieved from https://www.naturallivingideas.com/himalayan-salt-block/