Kosher Salt

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To some cooks, Fleur de sel is an overpriced and unnecessary ingredient marketed to the gullible and the pretentious; to others, it is the source of the uniquely clean and briny salinity sought after by lovers of fresh seafood. It is widely considered to be among the very best finishing salts, which means that you should keep it on hand for sprinkling onto food just before serving. If you cannot find fleur de sel near you, there are still options that will provide much of the same benefits. Consider the fleur de sel substitutes below.

Your Best Bet: Kosher Salt
Kosher salt is the large-grained salt named for its role in drawing the blood out of meat to render it ceremonially clean, according to Jewish religious guidelines. The large
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Fleur de sel is sometimes referred to as the cream of salt because it is harvested from the top layer of salt from evaporated ocean water. Sel gris comes from raking the bottom layer of that salt. Its crystals are smaller and less regular in shape but have an even stronger briny flavor and a pale gray color due to its increased mineral content. Like fleur de sel, sel gris is a moist salt and can provide largely the same texture in dishes. Use it as a finishing salt on meat, in casseroles and on hearty vegetable preparations including those that feature beans and carrots.

Use sel gris as a 1:1 substitute for fleur de sel.

In a Pinch: Maldon Sea Salt
Maldon sea salt comes from Essex in England rather than from the coast of Brittany in France. This salt is known for being one of the few worthwhile ingredients that England has contributed to the culinary world as well as for its pyramid-shaped crystals. Popular with chefs, Maldon sea salt has large crystals that allow it to provide the same bursts of salinity as those provided by fleur de sel. Maldon sea salt is not as moist as fleur de sel, which means that it may be easier to sprinkle it consistently on foods.

Like the other options above, you can use Maldon sea salt as a 1:1 substitute for fleur de sel.

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