When I started making infused sea salts for fun, I began many years ago. Since I could remember, I valued the importance salt played in baking and cooking. I remembered my first class in culinary school, the phrase “needs more salt” was always the first comment out of the instructor’s mouth. As students we had to learn salt was a necessary ingredient in the restaurant world, and if we thought the amount of salt in our dish was just right, we always added a little extra pinch because our taste buds were not fully groomed to the level of professional chef. Salt enhances the flavors of any dish making it more tantalizing to the taste buds and stimulates the brain’s pleasure system - making you love the dish even more. This is why more salt was always added.
Infused salt is a whole other level to enhancing the flavors of food. When additional ingredients like rosemary and lemon are soaked into the salt it changes the flavor profile. Salt takes on those additional flavors making it more like a seasoning – but let’s be clear it is still salt and deserves the respect and honor like the goddess she is. When adding infused salt to any dish, you get the benefit of the salt’s natural ability to enhance flavor, but the additional notes of whatever the salt was infused with. This can help eliminate the need to add additional flavorings. Infused salt is a two for one deal when cooking and baking!
I remember the day I made my first batch of infused sea salt. I had left over herbs from a friend’s culinary event. She no longer needed the herbs and gave them to me - she knew how much I loved them. One of those herbs was rosemary. A hardy herb with bright earthy smells that brought warmth to any dish. Rosemary is one of my favorite herbs to cook with – I put it in eggs, sprinkle it on roasted chicken, and simmer it in chicken noodle soup. Side note – smelling rosemary has been known to help people remember things! Growing up, I use to smell it right before I took a big test. I guess it worked!
On my kitchen counter next to the rosemary was lemons and some sea salt– I thought to myself rosemary and lemons go wonderful in cooking, what if I mixed it with salt and could have an already made mixture to use. At that time, I had never used infused salts in my cooking, this was an experiment to say the least! So, I made my first batch of rosemary lemon salt – was it good? To be honest, it was a horrible disaster but bless my father’s heart he said it was wonderful – I knew better.
Over the years I continued to practiced. I made a batch every year for the holidays, and every year I tweaked my recipe. Until I finally got an infused salt I loved and others did as well. That recipe is now the one that is a part of the Salty Jack Collection.
The Cat’s Meow Rosemary Lemon Salt is very special to me. And because of that I wanted to make a nod to my beloved cat Jack-Jack, who was also very special to me and is the inspiration to me starting this company. That is why it is the cat’s meow because both this salt and my cat are – as they said in the 90s “all that and a bag of potato chips.” This salt is what I call my “all-purpose” salt, meaning it can go on everything. Next to my stove I have my Salty Jack Salt Cellar filled to the rim with it because I use it more than I use my plain sea/rock salts. I sprinkle it on my morning eggs, I use it in my salad dressings, over my chicken, and I love to use it with roasted potatoes. I sprinkle that salty love on everything!
If you are new to infused sea salt, and are a bit intimidated I suggest staring out with The Cat’s Meow. The flavors are versatile and go with almost everything, you can’t mess it up. You can buy the salt in either our small or large jars, or you can buy it in one of our Salty Bundles and try it with a few other flavors.
Click the link below to go directly to The Cat's Meow:
Until next time - keep it salty!
-Alyssa aka the Salt Woman