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Dec 28, 2010 07:25 AM

Help- what to do with this salt from Santa?

Santa took wonderful care of my kitchen this year. Among other cooking-related things, I received several specialty jarred goods from a lovely local gourmet shop here in Atlanta. I'm looking forward to experimenting with the red pepper pesto and the Meyer lemon spread, but there's one gift that I have no clue what to do with.

It's an aromatic savory salt blend with Tuscan rose petals and crushed pink peppercorn. The jar is perfectly beautiful sitting on my counter but I'd like to, you know, use it. I just can't quite wrap my head around a way to do so.

Thoughts, advice, comments?

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  1. How coarse is the salt? I would use it for finishing as opposed to cooking with it (that would be a waste). I have over 20 different salts (different shapes, texture, moisture content and so on) and love to experiment. One of my favourites is to simply sprinkle some of the salt onto some good rustic bread that has been grilled or toasted and drizzle a good grassy olive oil on top. Delicious and eye opening. Sometimes that is all I have for a quick lunch!

    It would be great sprinkled on many cooked/sauteed/grilled/steamed veg as well as finishing beef. As it has rose petals and peppercorns it would also be great on pork. I would suggest the bread idea first so you can sort of get an idea of the flavour profile.

    It may sound odd but depending on its qualities it can be enjoyable sprinkled on various ice creams as well. And brownies love it.

    1. I have a very similar bottle that I recieved as a gift and Cheftathome has made the right call you'll want to experiment. I have found it best works as a finish or as part of a rub. I like it on fish- something light in flavor, in pasta and with salad/salad dressings. It is not the salt I turn to the most often but is beautiful and can be lovely. I have found I do not like it anywhere near a tomato- but that could be me.

      1. What about as a topping for homemade caramels?

        2 Replies
        1. re: operagirl

          Oh, yes. Finishing salts are superb on homemade caramels! Plus on a salted caramel tart that I have an absolutely amazing recipe for.

          1. re: chefathome

            Please post the caramel tart. I am in love with salted caramels and would like to try variations ie salted caramel cheesecake. Although I haven't mastered the perfect caramel sauce yet. Made creme caramel for Xmas dessert and couldn't get the caramel sauce to turn brown and I cooked it twice as long as recipe stated. The first time I made it, it was perfect, but each time after have I have had trouble with the carmelization. Any recs?

        2. Thanks for the suggestions, hounds! I'll definitely only use it as a finishing salt... I don't have much in the way of 'nice' salts, so I normally only whip them out at the very end (and I don't know that the little rose petals in the jar could stand up to much heat).

          I only started experimenting with pink peppercorn this past year, and I really like it on feta. I'm thinking this salt might be delicious on feta, maybe with some fig and honey to go along with it.

          2 Replies
          1. re: collegekitchen

            Just keep in mind that feta is already salty! But it is delicious with honeys and figs. Yum. Pink peppercorns are lovely on ice cream. I also make a pepercorn syrup that makes a wonderful glaze for pork, poultry and lamb. In my mortar and pestle I make a seasoning blend from Szechuan peppercorns, sel de gris, a few allspice and pink peppercorns.

            Finishing salts are also excellent on butterhead lettuce. Man, I could (and have!) talk about salt for hours and hours and hours...

            1. re: collegekitchen

              I love finishing salts on fruit such as apples, pears.... Not sure about the peppercorns though.

            2. Those ingredients are found in a lot of middle eastern and north African dishes.