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Four Benefits of Sea Salt

Salt is common yet extraordinary — what would our palates be without it? Though we enjoy it at nearly every meal, we give it relatively little attention. We took a closer look at the benefits of sea salt and found that there's much more to this precious ingredient than you'll find in a crusty shaker of table salt:

1. How it's harvested:

Sea salt is harvested through solar evaporation, with seawater left to evaporate naturally from large, shallow ponds. The process of solar evaporation is very slow — it can take years for the sun and wind to crystallize the saltwater — but it is less environmentally invasive than the process of mining salt from underground deposits.

2. How it's (not) processed:

Since it's given little or no further processing once evaporated, sea salt retains trace minerals and other natural components after the evaporation. These elements (which include nutrients such as magnesium, potassium, and calcium) add flavor — and often color — to the salt. These natural elements also add subtle flavor that varies according to the seawater from which the salt is harvested. Sometimes they give sea salts their defining properties, such as the tiny bits of clay that give gray sea salt its color, or the red volcanic clay of Hawaiian red sea salt.

3. How it tastes

Although sea salt and processed table salt contain about the same amount of sodium — so neither offers an advantage for those concerned with sodium consumption — many consider the naturally harvested, minimally processed, additive-free and mineral-containing sea salt to be the tastier choice.

4. How it's used

Sea salt is incredibly versatile. Use plain, granular sea salt for cooking and baking because the uniform grain ensures accurate, consistent measuring. A fine gourmet salt such as fleur de sel (the "caviar of salts") makes a wonderful condiment due to its more complex and nuanced flavor. Try it in freshly blended vinagrette over tender greens.

So, let's "pass" on the overly-processed iodized table salt and give the world's most popular condiment the respect it deserves. Try our gourmet salts, organic seafood seasoning blend or everyday coarse sea salt to discover the benefits of sea salt for yourself.

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