See our amazing collection of salt recipes, including Pascal Aussignac's pan-fried hake recipe, Chris Horridge's oysters in tempura batter, and Nathan Outlaw's Cornish salt pollock, squid and mussel stew.
A kitchen without salt is a kitchen without flavour. Salt is one of the most widely used spices in the world and perhaps one of the most essential, both for its mineral properties and ability to bring out the flavour of other ingredients.
There are several types of salt you can buy, with table salt, sea salt and rock salt being most common. Table salt is refined salt that has had most of its trace minerals removed to leave almost pure, bright white, sodium chloride. Table salt often contains additives, particularly iodine, and is typically the most economical salt one can buy.
Rock salt is made of larger crystals and has a grayish colour due to the minerals contained within in. It's often used as a casing in which to bake foods like fish or vegetables, for example, Robert Thompson's salt-baked swede.
Sea salt is exactly what it says on the tin (or salt shaker): salt derived from the sea through evaporation.
In addition to these basic salt varieties, a wealth of trendy salts are starting to hit the market and gain popularity for their distinctive mineral content, regional characteristics and special flavours. For example, Sel de Mer is a grey sea salt hand-harvested from Ile de Moirmoutier, off the Atlantic coast of France. You'll also find smoked salt and other flavoured salts gaining popularity.