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Salts! Salts! Salts!

post #1 of 10
Thread Starter 
I need to find out the difference...sodium wise for (icky) table salt, Sea Salt, Kosher Salt, Fleur de sal...etc. Anyone have some kind of reference chart?:crazy:
post #2 of 10
Salt is salt-sodium cloride

Gram for gram there is no difference in sodium content from any of the salts that you listed.

Liquored up and laquered down,
She's got the biggest hair in town!


Liquored up and laquered down,
She's got the biggest hair in town!

post #3 of 10
Different salts are defined by their impurities or different minerality. I would imagine there might be some minor differences as a result but basically FNF is right, it should be pretty much the same.
post #4 of 10
While I've not done the math and worked out the sodium content on a per gram basis, measure for measure (tsp for tsp) there is a substantial difference in the sodium content of different salts, Diamond Crystal kosher salt contains 280mg of sodium per 1/4 tsp. Morton kosher salt contains 480mg of sodium per 1/4 tsp, and Trader Joe's kosher salt contains 730mg of sodium per 1/4 tsp.

Lima French Atlantic sea salt contains 330mg of sodium per 1/4 tsp, and La Baleine fine sea salt contains 580mg of sodium.

The difference is because the salt crystals are of different size and shapes, and the salt takes up less or more space in the measuring spoon.

There are other factors involved ion the amount of sodium per measure, such as the amount of impurities in a measureor weight of salt, but these are usually minor amounts.

post #5 of 10
Sea Salt
Sea salt, obtained by evaporating seawater, is used in cooking and cosmetics. Its mineral content gives it a different taste from table salt, which is pure sodium chloride, usually refined from mined rock salt (halite) or from sea salt.

Kosher Salt
Kosher salt usually has no additives, and it has big crystals with large surface areas. This size and shape allows it to absorb more moisture than other forms of salt, and this makes kosher salt excellent for curing meats.

Anyone know the rest?
post #6 of 10
Incredible how salt is a recurring subject here....

I have said this in the past: link:

I think I participated in a discussion like this in the past....

It is important to point out that food grade salt must be 97% Sodium Chloride (NaCl) on a dry basis. This is part of the Codex Alimentarius which is a world standard.

At that level there is not much room for other <minerals> to make a great difference in taste.
Why is mined salt or even sea salt so pure? because Sodium Chloride is the least soluble of all minerals in sea water and forms pure crystals when sea water is evaporated slowly.
If anybody has ever evaporated seawater completely until only a mineral crust remains will know that the <mineral salts> left behind are not palatable (very bitter). Salt manufacturing is done by crystallization from a seawater brine.
Any food grade Salt dissolved in water will taste identical one compare to the other so if you cook by adding salt in water, don't waste your money on fancy stuff.

on the other hand, salt crystals dissolve at different rate depending on their crystalline form. For dry topical applications or semi-moist foods, the type of crystal has a bigger impact on flavour than the region the salt comes from. Although salt is assumed as very soluble in water, the crystal dissolves relatively slowly. On the tongue the lingering crystal/brine flavouring effect is well appreciated.

What does this all mean? All salts are virtually identical in Sodium Chloride content when compared by weight (g, oz, lbs). The different crystalline form of salt from different sources make them more or less dense hence when measured by volume (tsp, cups) every salt will vary on the amount of salt weight hence sodium they give.

quoting Wiki: In one gram of sodium chloride, there are approximately 0.3933 grams (393 mg) of sodium, and 0.6067 grams (607 mg) of chlorine.
link: Sodium chloride - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

Luc H.
I eat science everyday, do you?
I eat science everyday, do you?
post #7 of 10
Thread Starter 
Well, thanks to everyone for your input. Luc...we will always get back to salt...where would we be without it??? It's a mystery for sure...a staple of life and at one time was used for currency, so there will always be conversation about the versatility of NaCl....I intend to used your comments on my show Saturday and thanks!:rolleyes:
post #8 of 10
I think Luc and Shel hit it on the head.

The sodium content may be the same gram for gram. But the measure of sodium when comparing tablespoon to tablespoon can be quite different in sodium content.

Which also leads to the difference in the crystalline form. This is where I really love Fleur de sal so much. It's just so delicate! It feels like little sodium snowflakes from heaven. My suggestion is to get several of the salts in question and try them in different situations (including plain).

Myself... I usually use Kosher salt for cooking, table salt only for popcorn...and Fleur de sal for a topping salt. I've never cared much for French grey salt. Some complain about Fleur de sal being so expensive. is expensive if you look at the price per pound. But you know what? You don't need to buy it by the pound. I figure if other people buy a whopper every once in a while...I could buy a container of good salt that will last me nearly a year.

(I've also got a salt water chlorinator for my pool. But no, I didn't use Fleur de sal in it :rolleyes:)

post #9 of 10
So HBJUL, how did the show go?

Luc H.
I eat science everyday, do you?
I eat science everyday, do you?
post #10 of 10
Thread Starter 
The show was a blast. My guest chef, Timothy Garling from Jackalope Grill brought in about 9 different salts to taste and talk about. He's been a noted chef here and in Utah for quite some time. He was trained in Europe and has terrific credentials. Before becoming a chef, he was a science/chemistry teacher. He is a delight to have on and I always learn a lot when he comes in. He's invited me to a few of his "cooking classes" at his restaurant...and although they are very educational, I suspect he uses the classes (10 people at most) for just having fun and making sure the group has a great time with good food and wine! He is a walking encyclopedia of food too! And thanks to all of you who responded...I did mention you all on the show!:blush:
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