HOME > Chowhound > Home Cooking >

Discussion

Smoked Salt

I just got some very pungent, very coarse, smoked salt. It smells quite wonderfully of a blazing campfire full of bacon.

I expect I'll try adding it as-is to a braise, or something stewy. Or grind it and sprinkle onto a dish to finish it. But I'm feeling a little blocked as to the specifics (unusual for me).

So. How would *you* use this? I'm open to any and all suggestions!

  1. Click to Upload a photo (10 MB limit)
Delete
  1. I would recommend being judicious with the salt as it is really strong! I chewed a couple of the grains just to get an idea of the pure flavor and it was a little like the house had been on fire the day before. But I did use some to finish chili con carne and in soup instead of bacon and it was good and subtle there.

    1. I made the greatest simple appetizer using smoked salt - got the idea from Chocolate and Zucchini. You spread thin baguette slices (untoasted) with avocado puree spiked with a little lemon, sprinkle with a little smoked salt and top with sliced radishes. It's a great combination, simple to make and my guests wolfed it down. It's kind of a riff on the butter, radish and salt/ baguette combination which is a classic.

      1. I've consigned (to the resident smoker at our small restaurant) several varieties of smoked salt recently--Kosher, super-coarse Kosher, and Maldon. We are in the expiramental stage.

        I have used our smoked salt in everything except dessert (coming soon. . .). I think it works exceptionally well in vegetable dishes where it adds a flavor that seems somewhat meaty.

        1. I haven't actually TRIED this, but inspired by some exciting voges chocolate I've been eating, I would try sprinkling a very little bit on top of some fudgey brownies. I say on top, because I think it would better if a bit of the salt hit the tongue in small, intense doses- rather than throughout the whole brownie. Oh, and if it's REALLY coarse, it might be good to grins it up a little finer. I'm not sure... you'd have to test a few ways. Anyway, I bet that'd be really good.

          Oh, and along those lines it would be cool to make s'mores in the broiler and add some of the salt to get that campfire taste. Just enough to be a little bit salty.

          Huh. I guess now I have to go out and buy some of this salt to have some fun of my own!

          3 Replies
          1. re: erns53

            OH my gosh, why have I not thought to do this with brownies?! I think I still have a little smoked salt from a teensy packet I bought last summer. If only someone will invite me to a party, I'll try it.

            My favorite use for it has been on roasted sweet potatoes.

            1. re: BostonCookieMonster

              Mmmm, I am going to have to try it on roasted sweet potatoes. What a great idea.

              1. re: BostonCookieMonster

                Oh, man. If you were going to bring brownies, I would throw you a party just for that.

            2. I've used smoked salt with both fish and meat (in meatloaf), and it works well with both. In the meatloaf I also used smoked paprika (enough smoky flavor you say...?) but with all the other things I threw in it worked.

              1 Reply
              1. re: 280 Ninth

                I encountered this recently in Tampa when traveling for business. A restaurant I visited frequently served a signature smoked salt with sweet cream butter and freshly baked bread. A smear of butter on the hot bread with a sprinkling of the pungent smoked salt was absolutely divine.

              2. I just got some, so haven't experimented much yet, but I'm expecting it to be useful when I want to make vegetarian versions of dishes that usually have ham or bacon in them, like bean dishes. The bread/butter/smoked salt idea sounds divine. I wonder if it would go with certain chocolate dishes? Hmm.

                1. So are we all talking about a course grained salt or are there finer smoked salts? Or can any kind of salt be smoked?

                  2 Replies
                  1. re: WCchopper

                    I have coarse salt...and I imagine that it's far easier to smoke coarse than fine grained salt. That said, it's easy enough to place some coarse salt in a grinder and, well, grind it.

                    1. re: WCchopper

                      Of the salt varieties we've done ourselves, I like the Maldon the best. It's flaky, and it crumbles easily for finishing.

                    2. Thanks for all your suggestions thus far. I might go crazy and try to finish some homemade shortbread with it!

                      3 Replies
                      1. re: litchick

                        I may have to try the shortbread trick. I love shortbread with cardamom and black pepper--smoked salt might be perfection!

                        1. re: mamaciita

                          Mamacita, you seem to be fairly familiar with using smoked salt...would you think it might work as the salt in the Zuni roast chicken recipe???

                          1. re: Alice Letseat

                            Had to look up Zuni chicken : )

                            I don't see why it wouldn't work. I think the smoked salts out there vary widely in their smokiness--our "homebrew" definetly does. Still, we smoke whole chickens which are deliriously good, so I doubt that the salt will add too much smoke flavor.

                      2. This is a great thread! I just stocked up on some smoked salt I found at Marshall's but was not quite sure how I was going ot use it. There are some terrific suggestions here. Keep 'em coming. :)

                        1. Where did you find the smoked salt? I've been looking for it recently and haven't been able to find any. Thanks in advance for the help!

                          4 Replies
                          1. re: leandergal

                            My Scandanavian wife (and I) love the Danish Viking-Smoked Sea Salt from Salt Traders. http://www.salttraders.com/Detail.bok...

                            It's outrageously overpriced, but a little goes a long way.

                            1. re: leandergal

                              The stuff I got was from Whole Foods, stocked near the olive bar/cheese area, and packaged by WF themselves in one of those plastic clamshell-style take-out containers. It cost about $6 for the equivalent of, oh, probably 4-5 oz.

                              1. re: leandergal

                                In Louisivlle, KY you can find several varieties at Creation Gardens on Main Street--including Bourbon smoked salt for which the smoke is generated by burning used bourbon barrel staves.

                                Must try that in some caramelly dessert.

                                1. re: leandergal

                                  epicure selections (one of those tupperware party type things....) is where i got mine...it's an alder smoked sea salt and i throw it on lots of things !

                                2. Ok, so last night my good friend was so nice and brought me a new salt grinder after an Ikea expedition. It prompted me to get busy trying my smoked salt. This morning, I made a slice of hearty toast with melted cheese and avocado, finished with the ground smoked salt. YUM. Tonight, I used ground smoked salt to finish off a nice mushroom risotto. Double yum.

                                  Maybe next atop a caramel creme brulee? Makes me wish I had smoked maldon...

                                  1. I love smoked salt! I have some in a salt grinder, and I use it in pretty much everything, for added flavour. Quite nice when baking with chocolate, although I'm not sure whether the flavour comes through more than normal salt, or if I'm imagining it!

                                    I recently got some smoked garlic and smoked olive oil, and those go down really well, too.

                                    5 Replies
                                    1. re: Gooseberry

                                      Smoked garlic!!! WHY didn't I think of that??

                                      Tell me all about it--how is it packaged? Is it in the skin or peeled? Soft like roasted garlic or firm like raw? Is it packed in salt or a brine of some sort?

                                      Wait 'till I tell my husband the garlic nut. . .

                                      1. re: mamaciita

                                        There's a farmstall nearby me that smokes everything -butter, garlic, olive oil, you name it! Obviously, it's cold smoked. The garlic is smoked whole, unpeeled. The outside browns lightly, but the inside looks normal, and you cook with it as you would normal garlic, but it has a surprisingly mild smoky flavour, best suited to dishes where garlic shines out. I found the smokiness was lost in tomato sauces, etc.

                                        1. re: Gooseberry

                                          Thanks! We smoke tomorrow, and I can't wait for a taste.

                                          1. re: mamaciita

                                            What happened with the garlic experiment? I'm waiting with bated breath!

                                            1. re: WCchopper

                                              Me too. Still waiting, that is. I don't think the garlic made it on to the smoker. We're planning to smoke both peeled and unpeeled cloves to see which we like best. Should be smoking again Monday or Tuesday.

                                              As soon as I have info, I'll post it!

                                    2. Because of all this chit-chart I went out to find some smoked salt. At Whole Foods I found a canister that had a sampling of salts including smoked. I'm excited to mess around.

                                      I'm not sure if it's okay to be a bit off topic, but there's one salt in the batch that I DON'T know what to do with- it's Eurasian black salt. It's really sulfur-y and smells like, you know, rotten eggs.

                                      Anyone know what to do with that one?

                                      2 Replies
                                      1. re: erns53

                                        Having never tasted Eurasian black salt, I would sprinkle it on warm, crusty bread with unsalted butter. Or plain, boiled potatoes or plain, scrambled eggs just to get an idea of how it tastes on food.

                                        After you have an idea of how it truly tastes, you can decide what it needs.

                                        1. re: erns53

                                          I have the black salt and I use it quite often. I understand that some people may find it off-putting, but I love it and need it at home all the time.

                                          I use it for - egg white omelette
                                          - mix into curry
                                          - egg salad
                                          - soup (esp. seafood)

                                          Just be careful (esp. if you haven't tried it before) not to add too much at one time. It gives these dishes an "umami" flavor!

                                        2. I have used on salmon- creating a light rub then bake it creates a wonderful crispness and the flavor cooks throughout.
                                          I have also used this on pizza to intensify the flavor of a basic tomato moz pie.
                                          and I'm thinking about seeing how it works in soup as a bacon replacement in recipes that call for a small amount bacon for flavor?-might be terrible might be good
                                          Be judicious it can take over!
                                          I tend to use Red Sea Salt more than anything because it has that smokey flavor that I love but is less intense

                                          1 Reply
                                          1. re: poached

                                            I did the sub for bacon in stew. I didn't use much, so it was subtle. It was good, but still entirely different than bacon. It's definitly worth a try.

                                          2. This sounds so good - does anyone have any suggestions for brands (I can't seem to find the Maldon smoked salt)?

                                            3 Replies
                                            1. re: pslopian

                                              I found a few jars of Bellamessa All Natural Smoked Sea Salt Flakes at Marshall's a few weeks ago (bought them all, I've never seen it there before and who knows if or when they'll get more, right?) They make a nice lemon sea salt flake salt too.

                                              1. re: pslopian

                                                I have the Matiz Espana brand and it's fantastic. I used it all the time this past summer on sliced tomatoes and it was amazing. Also used it to season my veggie chili for super bowl party and it was great. You can order online here:
                                                http://culinarycollective.com/

                                                1. re: pslopian

                                                  We smoked the Maldon ourselves. I love the way the color from the smoke shows off the pyramid shape of the salt crystals.

                                                2. I add smoked salt to most soups. Lentil, tomato, black bean, you name it. I particularly like it in a vegan potato soup.

                                                  1 Reply
                                                  1. re: hollyeve

                                                    I too have been obsessed with smoked salt ever since I found it in the grocery store. I used it on Pizza all of the time to get that super smoky taste, and the added salt is bad for me, but tastes sooo great! It's the same reason I love anchovies on my pizza. Smoked salt is great on anchovy and avocado pizza. I recently was not able to find any at the local supermarket, so I bought some on eBay from Tastewells. It isn't quite the same as my first commercial brand, but it's got it's own charms and refinement.

                                                  2. I have smoked salt myself and I put them in grinders and put it on my omelettes, chillis, and soup (particularly cream soup). It is also great on potatoes!

                                                    1. I stumbled upon smoked sea salt at Kroger (Louisville, KY) yesterday. The shelf tag says "Belissima." It has the same structure (pyramid) as the Maldon that we smoke. Kroger had unflavored and lemon in the same brand--@ $3.00 each.

                                                      1 Reply
                                                      1. re: mamaciita

                                                        Just bought some Bellamessa Smoked Salt Flakes at Ocean State Job Lot for 2.99.

                                                        Recipe:

                                                        http://opal-export.com/Index.asp?Arti...

                                                      2. Just found this site...love it already. I bought smoked salt the other day and so far have sprinkled it on honey/ginger grilled salmon fillet and used a smidgeon in some pumpkin soup I made. (a smidgeon is more than 1/4 tspn but more less than 1/2 tspn) Added a whole new dimension in flavor to both without being overpowering.

                                                        1 Reply
                                                        1. re: robwin

                                                          Yummy- I'm going to try the pumpkin soup addition. I too love it with salmon- really on any fish!

                                                        2. On a recent trip to Seattle, bought some Salish Smoked Salt at Market Spice in the Pike Place Market. It is great stuff, very smoky. It was very good sprinkled on home-made mozzarella cheese and oven roasted asparagus...

                                                          1. Anyone tried alderwood smoked salt by artisan?

                                                            1. I just watched an episode of DDD on Foodnetwork. Guy visited a chef who used lots of smoked salt on pork shoulder, wrapped it up in banana leaves, then in foil, and popped it in the oven for several hours. It came out like Kalua Pork. Since I no longer have a smoker at home, I was intrigued with the whole idea. Gonna try it.

                                                              1. I'm happy to find this thread. I have a $13 jar of smoked salt languishing in the pantry. Now I'm wishing it were pumpkin season :-) I'm extremely curious about the dessert possibilities. I like salted caramel. . . no, like is not a strong enough word. . . I adore salted caramel, and also chocolate and chili powder. Smoked salt seems like it might have potential.