Finishing Salts in Paleo Cooking

I’ve written before about my thoughts on incorporating salt into the modern Paleo lifestyle, but here’s a brief recap:

1) If you’re a Paleo endurance athlete, you actually need to add some salt to your food.  Sweating out all the electrolytes and not replacing them is not a great idea.  

2) If you’re a formerly sedentary person who is not exercising very much, you do not.  

Yes, there is a bit of a grey area in between but the take away message is that none of us need to be over-salting or eating foods which are highly processed and high in sodium on a regular basis.   Salt should not be the only ‘spice’ or ‘flavor enhancer’ in anyone’s diet.

Now that we’ve gotten that out of the way, let’s talk about the different kinds of salt.  One of my favorite categories from a cooking stand point are the finishing salts; adding them after a meal is cooked is the idea, and there are several varieties to choose from.

Some of my regulars include:

  • Pink Himalayan Salt – a fossil marine salt, rich in Calcium, Magnesium, Potassium, Copper and Iron (which gives the salt its pink color).
  • Fleur de Sel – comprised of crystals that form naturally on the surface of salt evaporation ponds in the Guérande region of France and raked  using only wooden tools. The process can only be completed in the summer. Called the “caviar of salts” by chefs worldwide, true Fleur de Sel comes from the Guérande region of France, just like champagne, which must come from the Champagne region of France to be truly authentic.
  • Black Kona Salt – dramatic, glossy black sea salt.  The unique color comes from lava, which adds minerals and activated charcoal which results in a sulfuric aroma and earthy flavor.

Again, please don’t use salt and nothing else with your food, as doing so would limit so many of the other lovely herbs, spices and natural flavors of the foods themselves.

A little in moderation, however, is a perfectly Paleo part of it!