French salt has been used for centuries to add taste and flavor to food. Its rich and fragrant flavors make it a popular ingredient for savory dishes and for a variety of sweet recipes. The harvesting of this salt has a history dating back to ancient times. During this time, salt was also used as a remedy for many different ailments. Today, however, the process of acquiring this delicious salt has been transformed, and a wide range of gourmet French salt is available to enjoy.
Fleur de sel
Fleur de Sel is a special type of sea salt. It comes from the French coastal region of Brittany and Guerande. This delicate salt has a unique taste and aroma. You can find fleur de sel in specialty stores and European food markets.
Fleur de sel can be used as a garnish on a number of foods. When sprinkled on your favorite dish, it will add a special zing and make it even more flavorful. Some dishes that are a good match for this sea salt include sashimi, sushi, ceviche, and even desserts.
The color of this salt can vary, depending on the area where it is harvested. However, it is usually a light brown, grey, or pink. It is a naturally occurring source of magnesium and calcium. These nutrients are not found in regular table salt.
Fleur de sel has a high moisture content, which makes it a little more difficult to work with. Because of its texture, it is best used as a garnish. A pinch of this salt can add a touch of crunch to your buckwheat crepes or as an accent to your brown butter sage radishes.
In addition to its unique flavor and appearance, this sea salt has many other unique properties. For example, it is an excellent finishing element for chocolate truffles. Also, it is known for its ability to add a special, crunchy finish to grilled chicken or fish.
Fleur de l’Ile de Re
Fleur de l’Ile de Re French salt has a delicate, crystalline texture. This delicate sand-colored mineral is harvested from a unique natural environment and requires a specific extraction process. The result is a savory and luminous salt that is a perfect finishing ingredient.
The production of Fleur de l’Ile de RE is carried out by a small business. It’s located off the western coast of France near La Rochelle. Founded in 1942, the Cooperative des Sauniers de l’Ile de Re is a non-profit organization that sells and markets the salt.
A visit to the Cooperative des Sauniers on the Ile de Re offers a glimpse into the art and science of sea salt. The facility fully taps into the natural processes of solar tidal flow. As a result, the facility is not using petroleum inputs, which is typical of commercial salt operations.
A visit to the cooperative museum gives a more detailed explanation of the salt-making process. The museum also sells Rhetais salt, a blend of herbs and spices that has a distinctly rosy tinge.
In addition to the salt, the cooperative runs an online store. They offer a variety of gourmet products such as Guerande grey salt, which is made with white truffles. For less than $10, you can buy two-ounce jars of this delicious salt.
Whether you’re looking for something to sprinkle on your next roast chicken or a delicious table spice, fleur de l’Ile de Re is worth checking out. You’ll love its delicate, crystalline texture and faint hint of brine.
Velvet de Guerande
Velvet de Guerande French gray sea salt is a good choice for bath salt, scrubs or handmade soap. This gray colored mineral-rich salt is harvested by hand in France. It’s unrefined, moist and comes in fine, coarse and extra coarse grains. The mineral-rich water of these salt ponds gives it a unique gray hue.
One of the best parts about this fine grained sliver of sea salt is its fine texture and subtle taste. With the best possible minerals and trace elements, this is one of the highest quality natural salts available. A dash in your bathwater or bath gel will elicit a calming sensation while you relax in the tub. Besides the soothing benefits, this mineral-rich salt is also a good exfoliator. Added to a bath, you’ll notice the benefits almost immediately.
Another benefit is that the salt is organic compliant, which is important for those who are trying to avoid processed foods. Not only does this make for a healthier bath experience, but it means less waste!
Although a little more expensive, this high end salt is a worthy addition to any home kitchen. Whether you are baking cookies, making chocolates or simply snacking, this salt is a good choice. Known as the celtic salt, this fine grained sliver is also a good choice for finishing your dishes.
While this salt is not made from salty water, it contains a lot of oligo-elements from the argile bassins found in seawater. These oligo-elements are what give this mineral-rich salt its unique flavor and scent.
Tamise de Guerande
Tamise de Guerande is a fine salt with a rich mineral content. Despite its greyish hue, it’s not quite as crystalline as Fleur de Sel. It has a pleasantly coarse finish, which makes it ideal for finishing casseroles or breads. This is also a good option for toppings, especially since the salt has a very pleasant, non-astringent flavor.
While there’s no shortage of salt to choose from, it pays to take a closer look at some of the better known types. For instance, grueso sel gris de Guerande is a top-notch, fine-grained sea salt that’s produced in a pristine region on the French Riviera. Unlike most other gourmet sea salts, it’s minimally processed and doesn’t contain additives.
In addition to a great flavor, Gros Sel De Guerande adds a subtle earthiness to dishes. Although it may not be as pronounced as Fleur de Sel, it’s a better option for seasoning. The salt is a natural byproduct of the coastal areas of France, so it’s a cinch to find. As with most sea salts, it’s a good idea to buy from a reputable company.
Aside from the obvious, the most important part of this salt is its ability to preserve moisture. Since it’s harvested from clay-lined salt ponds, it retains a substantial amount of its natural moisture. That’s why it’s an excellent choice for commercial kitchens, where salt water is often present.
Fumee de Sel
If you’re looking for the perfect finishing salt for your gourmet meats and fish, look no further than the Fumee de Sel smoked salt from Artisan Salts. This gourmet salt has the smoky flavor of aged chardonnay oak. It’s the perfect way to accentuate any recipe. The salt is available in bulk or in a resealable 7.5 oz jar.
Although the Fumee de Sel is a top of the line product, you can also check out the more affordable options from the Artisan Salts line of smoked sea salts. There are many types of smoked salts to choose from, including the aforementioned Fumee de Sel and the more affordable Fumee de Mer, which has a higher concentration of mineral content. Aside from its smoky flavor, it also possesses the iodine-free goodness of a finely ground sea salt.
Another option to consider is the Fumee de Sel Chardonnay Oak Smoked Sea Salt, which is made from real Chardonnay infused sea salt and captures the smoky flavors of aged chardonnay oak. As a result, it infuses the most elegant and toasted oak notes while capturing the savory hint of white wine. This gourmet salt can be used to complement any meal, whether it’s meat, seafood or vegetables. With the right tools, you can turn any dish into something special. And while this premium salt is not for the faint of heart, it does provide the necessary nutritional boost without a fuss.
History of salt harvesting
The history of salt harvesting in Southern France dates back to Antiquity. During the Middle Ages, small Salinas were owned by noblemen and clergy. These were located on the coasts of the Rhone delta and Languedoc-Roussillon.
The first salt works were established in Guerande shortly after the Roman conquest. They utilised the storage capacity of the lagoon. Salt was transported in salt blocks called amoleh, which were carried by camel west to Atsbi.
Between the 1700s and 1800s, the government imposed taxes on salt. These taxes were a source of discontent among the population. Families who didn’t buy salt wouldn’t pay the tax.
A new tax was introduced by Napoleon Bonaparte. This tax, known as gabelle, was unpopular. It was introduced to raise money for France’s war. However, it was abolished by the National Constituent Assembly on 1 December 1790.
During the 19th century, the production of salt was rationalised. Many small Salinas were abandoned and industrial areas were established in their place. There was also a rise in smuggling.
In the 1950s, 29 coastal Salinas were active. In the last few decades, the number has decreased drastically. Today, only five are active. Of these, three are located in the Rhone Delta and two are located in the Narbonnais area.
Coastal Salinas have been affected by homogenisation, which is a process in which the landscape is largely devoid of natural areas. This has led to the loss of mosaic patterns.