As James Beard so eloquently wrote “where would we be without salt?” Salt is the most important ingredient in cooking and baking. I know that is not politically correct to state on so many health levels ~ but that is my truth. Knowing how much salt to use is the key that separates an okay cook from a great cook. As we all know, over salting can absolutely ruin a dish, and under salting can often leave a dish insipid and flat. It’s all about getting the right balance with the right type of salt and it pulls out and heightens all the flavors of whatever you are using. I use kosher salt with its sweeter, milder taste and larger crystals for salting water for pasta, vegetables and brines. The water should taste like the ocean and it takes quite a bit of salt. I use sea salt in my favorite Costco adjustable grinder for practically everything, and use humble table salt for baking because it has smaller crystals and dissolves more easily. I love to grind Himalayan pink sea salt over a salad just before I serve it because it sounds so exotic and fancy and I love that little unexpected crunch. On a trip to Whole Foods I came across little tubs of bulk seasoned salts. I bought the Mediterranean Blend with garlic, lemon, lavender, rosemary, thyme and basil, Tuscan Salt Crystals with dried Italian herbs, tomato flecks, lemon peel and rosemary oil, and the Thai Ginger Fusion blended with ginger and ginger oil (great for just sprinkling on scallops before you sear them). I made labels for them, put them in little jars and gave them as gifts. When I see them in my spice drawer, they inspire me to think of new ways to use them.