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Let's go easy on the salt


Let's go easy on the salt
In terms of cooking, I'm probably not teaching you much, salt is ubiquitous, we put it in almost all our dishes, in varying amounts depending on our taste, some like salty, others less, others still not. Its main role is the flavor, the taste, we say that it is a flavor enhancer, ie it reveals the tastes of food, especially if they are a bit bland by nature.
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Last modified on: February 20th 2021

Keywords for this post:SaltHealthExcessWHOLimitationReduction
Let's go easy on the salt
In other words, a dish that is not salty is much less tasty than a salty dish, and as a result, it is, for many (and I am the first), difficult to do without it.

le sel


But there are 2 salts, the one you add while cooking, or by spreading with semi-salted butter, according to your taste, and especially the one you don't see or don't feel, the hidden salt. And to illustrate this, I will take 2 concrete examples:

Ready-made meals

The industrialists of the food industry have found in salt their best friend, not only they raise the taste as I told you previously, but moreover it acts as a water retainer, so everything that contains water, almost everything in fact, is generally very or too salty. Tragically, there is a lot of it everywhere, in all ready-made meals, cold cuts, snacks... even sweet foods (creams, desserts, biscuits, etc. etc.) contain it.

boite de ravioli


So when you heat up a simple box of ravioli, you will eat too much salt without realizing it, and as a recent study by "Que choisir" shows, it's even worse for anything that seems cheap, the less expensive the product is, the more salt it contains, so that the manufacturer can mask the poor quality of its ingredients.

Bread

In bread, there is also salt, bread is extremely simple: water, flour, a little salt and yeast or leaven, period! Everything else, as JP Coffe rightly said, is crap, just there to compensate for the deficiencies of industrial bread.

le sel dans le pain


But let's go back to salt, in France, the usual use (but it is not regulated, for the moment), is 18 gr of salt per kilo of flour. This is relatively little, to compare 50 years ago it was 24 gr, or even more!
The trend is clearly downwards, and the bakery industry is pushing for a reduction to 16 or 14 g, or even less.
Moreover, there is a simple phenomenon linked to slow bread-making: the longer the dough rests and ferments, the less salt it needs. And so the express baguettes from the supermarkets or bread factories, imagine what they load in salt to try to sell you something that has a vague taste.
Don't hesitate to ask your baker, ask him how much salt he uses per kilo of flour? If he's a good baker, not only will he give you a straight answer, but he'll also be able to give you his personal perspective on this delicate subject. By the way, our Belgian friends have a maximum of 14g.

And so?

The observation is without appeal, we eat too much salt, we should be at 5 gr/day maximum according to the WHO, and we are rather at 10/15 gr in France.

What can we do?

The solution is almost too simple: first of all, we must try to limit all ready-made products, which is often easier said than done. Let's see this as a strong signal to push us to cook more and more ourselves, by transforming the products we buy locally. The virtuous circle I've already told you a lot about (yes, it's my hobby): we buy local even if it's a bit more expensive, we support local producers, they produce well and healthily, it's good for our health, everyone wins.

Then, when we cook, we must try to avoid having a heavy hand in salt with extremely simple tricks too: always taste before re(salting), prefer spices to salt when possible, do not "double" that is to say for example do not salt a dressing, because it is already salty with the addition of mustard, no or little salt if you put cheese in your recipe, etc.

saler



Nothing revolutionary in all this you will have understood, you just have to be a little careful, read carefully the labels of what you buy, and especially... cook as much as possible!

To sum up: Let's go easy on the salt, it's a matter of our health.


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