Thursday, March 12, 2009

Oy Vey

I cook. Fairly well, I've been told. But I'm more of a recipe slave than an improviser. That means if a recipe calls for a particular variation on a common ingredient, I'll do my best to stick to the script. For example, I've got a couple of recipes that specifically call for kosher salt, which I otherwise don't use. Which is why I have two 3-pound boxes of kosher salt in my cupboard, each with about 1/2 a teaspoon missing.

But I never really thought about what made it "kosher." Turns out, it's not so much what it is as what it's used for:

Kosher salt gets its name not because it follows the guidelines for kosher foods as written in the Torah (nearly all salt is kosher, including ordinary table salt), but rather because of its use in making meats kosher, by helping to extract the blood from the meat. Because kosher salt grains are larger than regular table salt grains, when meats are coated in kosher salt the salt does not dissolve readily; the salt remains on the surface of the meat longer to draw fluids out of the meat.
An interesting fact to know and tell. Makes sense. And it makes this guy look like a King Kong sized dipshit (via Ed):
Retired barber Joe Godlewski says he was inspired by television chefs who repeatedly recommended kosher salt in recipes.

"I said, 'What the heck's the matter with Christian salt?'" Godlewski said, sipping a beer in the living room of his home in unincorporated Cresaptown, a western Maryland mountain community.

By next week, his trademarked Blessed Christians Salt will be available at, the Web site of Memphis, Tenn.-based seasonings manufacturer Ingredients Corporation of America.
What makes it "Christian"?
It's sea salt that's been blessed by an Episcopal priest, ICA President Damon S. Arney said Wednesday.
I'm not sure the blessing took, however. If you go to the company's website, it tells you:
All our ingredients are Kosher Certified and FDA approved
So, if you're so insecure in your faith that you need everything in the house to say "Christian" on it, please, by all means, spend your money there. It's all kosher in the end, after all.

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