Salt Block 101
You may have noticed that the Himalayan salt block is definitely having a moment in the culinary world. Its rosy-pink color and versatility make it immensely Instagrammable, but there are plenty of other great reasons to add one to your rotation. A good-quality salt block is a cooking tool that not only looks beautiful incorporated into your favorite meals, but it’s an easy way to impart a lot of deep, delicious flavor. Intimidated? No need to be! Our how-to guide will help you learn to use and care for your salt block so you can cook like a pro.
Why Use a Salt Block?
Not only are these blocks cool to look at, they also have a wide array of uses around your kitchen. Cooking with a salt block imparts a more complex taste than typical table salt you’d sprinkle on your meal. This is due to Himalayan pink salt containing over 80 trace minerals, which also makes it better for your health and gives your meal a deeper, more interesting taste.
A salt block is altogether a safe, resilient, germ-free cooking surface. Himalayan salt is naturally anti-microbial, due to its low porosity and moisture retention. Salt blocks can also withstand cooking at very high heat; pink salt’s melting point is a little under 1,500°F! (But be sure to check the use and care instructions for your salt block before testing this out at home).
Speaking of heat, a Himalayan salt block has superior heat distribution due to the crystal structure of the salt, meaning your food will cook evenly no matter where you place it on the block. The crystal structure of the salt also helps these blocks retain their heat longer so your delicious meal won’t get cold before you can enjoy it.
How to Use a Salt Block While Cooking
Cooking with a salt block is a lot easier than you’d think! If you’ve ever used a cast iron skillet, you’ll be able to handle the block. Before you get cooking, make sure that your salt block is completely dry to avoid breakage. We love cooking steak on our salt blocks, but experiment with seafood and veggies, too!
Here are some tips to get you started:
- You can use a salt block on the grill or in the oven. Make sure to keep it at least a half-inch away from direct flames if grilling.
- For better results, pat your food dry with paper towels before placing it on the block., Season your food as desired.
- Slowly heat the block, increasing the heat in 10- to 15-minute stages until it’s at your desired temperature.
- Place your food on the preheated block, then cook as you would with any other cook surface (grill, pan, etc.)
- The block will remain hot for about 30 minutes once removed from the heat source, so be careful!
How to Use a Salt Block for Serving Cold Foods
Take your next meat and cheese plate to a new, delicious level by serving it on a salt block! Not only will it look great, your charcuterie favorites will get a tasty kick of flavor from the salt.
Here’s how it’s done:
- Refrigerate the block for at least an hour ahead of serving to reduce the internal temperature.
- If you’re serving something that requires a colder temperature, you can freeze the block for about two hours.
- Try serving sushi, charcuterie, cheeses, chilled appetizers, or desserts!
How to Care for a Salt Block
With the right care, your salt block can perform at its best for quite a long time. Here are a few tips to keep your salt block in great shape:
- When the block is cooled, wipe off any remaining seasonings or spices. Gently scrub it down with a soft brush or scouring pad to remove any residue.
- Wipe down your salt block with a damp cloth. Use as little moisture as possible and never submerge it in water or use soap (or put in the dishwasher, obviously).
- Gently pat the block dry with a clean cloth or paper towels and let it dry for at least 24 hours before you use it again.
- Store the block in a dry place away from humidity.
Give a Gourmet Cooking Experience!
A salt block makes a great gift for any foodie or home chef and allows them to create gourmet meals right in their own kitchen! Our Salt Block is a thoughtful gift on its own, or take it to the next delicious level with these impressive gifts:
Our Salt Block & Grill Tool Set is perfect for anyone who loves to grill and experiment with new techniques. It comes with our Salt Block, stylish canvas Grilling Apron, and sturdy Grill Tool Set for easy cooking.
The Deluxe Filet Salt Block Gift Set makes an excellent gift for any home chef who loves to test out new flavors. This gift comes with our Salt Block, four 6-ounce filets, as well as a set of four delicious seasonings from Sutter Buttes.
Shop our Salt Block and tons of delicious things to cook on it at hickoryfarms.com!