Homemade Salt

When I tell people about the local foods party (now an annual tradition!), that which I get the most comments about is the homemade salt. Because I've had so much fun making my own salt, I thought I would share with you the process so you can make your own salt too (assuming you live near a salty body of water)*.

First step is to harvest the sea water. Needless to say*, the cleaner the water the better. I try to take my water from below the surface so as to avoid floating badness, such as oil and gas, but away from the bottom where lurks grunge such as fish poop and sand. In my experience, a liter of water will make about a half cup of salt.

Next, you need to find a shallow pan. I've tried both a metal cookie sheet with shallow sides and a pyrex 9x13 baking dish. The metal cookie sheet more quickly evaporated the water, but scraping the salt away was more difficult than in the pyrex, plus, I was a little unsure about what chemicals/sealers the salt might have bonded to on the metal. My solution is to contain the water in the pyrex and let the pyrex rest on the metal sheet like this.

When you've got your pan set up, find yourself a sunny spot. Decent wind helps too. As the water evaporates, add more, little bits at a time, so the bottom of the pan is continually covered. On average, I would pour about one cup of new water in per day, depending on the sun and the wind. After about a week, the salt build-up on the bottom of the pan starts to be significant. In my experience, the sun has a hard time completely evaporating all the water leaving you with damp, hard to spread salt. My solution is to throw the near finished pan of salt (just the pyrex, not the cookie sheet) in the oven after it's been used. The residual heat is more than enough to finish off the drying process.

Presto, now you've got some homemade sea salt.
Thursday August 23 2007File under: food

Toggle Comments (6)comment?
on Thu 23rd Aug, 2007 09:57 pm PDT Mom said:
Let me add that it is the saltiest salt any Old Salt could want--far saltier than the table variety which lacks all those great minerals from the sea. mmmm, finger-lickin good.
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on Thu 23rd Aug, 2007 11:24 pm PDT Andrew said:
yeah. But Creepy goes to Old Salts.
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on Fri 24th Aug, 2007 04:52 am PDT Chris said:
Most bodies of water around here are saltless and chock full of ducks/geese- I shudder to think what my pan would look like.
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on Sat 25th Aug, 2007 10:14 pm PDT Emilly said:
I've got more than enough sun to dry out that puppy...no salt water though. The salt distributors must be in on it- keeping the goods apart so we are forced to buy that packaged NaCl with the umbrella girl in the yellow dress.
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on Sun 26th Aug, 2007 07:39 pm PDT me said:
do i get a thousand yen if i create salt from the tears of a [japanese] girl?
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on Mon 27th Aug, 2007 08:22 pm PDT Saxtor said:
That photo just screams "I'm a sassy lad!"
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