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Salted: A Manifesto on the World's Most Essential Mineral, with Recipes Hardcover – October 12, 2010
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From Publishers Weekly
Copyright © Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.
“This illustrated volume changed the way I cook.”
“As the FDA considers lower salt standards for Americans, salt has never been a hotter chef's ingredient. This is part cookbook (Roasted Peaches in Bourbon Syrup with Smoked Salt), part salt tract (positing "Five Rules of Strategic Salting)," part reference tome.”
—Cooking Light, Favorite Cookbooks, 2010
“This book isn't really a cookbook, not in the recipe-driven sense of the word. It's more of a user guide, and an inspiring one at that. From the lively introduction, in which Bitterman recounts his first experience with sea salt, to the geeky chapters on the history and science of the stuff, to the slim selection of recipes broken into categories like "brining," "curing," "salt crust" and "cooking on salt blocks," this book is aimed at inspiring and educating people on the virtues of natural salt.”
—Portland Oregonian, Best of 2010, 12/21/10
“Flipping through the stellar new Salted: A Manifesto on the World's Most Essential Mineral With Recipes, we are reminded that the world is made up of so much more than fleur de sel. You could buy a bottle of $15 tequila to gift along with the book, but you get the sense author Mark Bitterman would consider that a margarita sacrilege on par with using kosher salt ("a battery-operated puppy with no hair, trying to comfort you with its soulless antics"). After all, you're handing over a book written by a man who uses sel gris, three full cups of the pricey French salt, in his preserved lemons recipe.”
—LA Weekly, Squid Ink blog, Top 10 Cookbook And Drink Gift Pairings, 12/14/10
“My pick for personal favorite of the season is Salted: A Manifesto on the World’s Most Essential Mineral, with Recipes by Mark Bitterman, which I’ve enthusiastically blurbed. My reverence for salt is bettered only by Bitterman’s who sells salt and chocolate at The Meadow. Bitterman writes well about the history of salt, the amazing array of salts available, and offers numerous recipes and techniques for using these salts.”
—Michael Ruhlman, Books for the Holidays, 12/13/10
“I am a walking salt lick and Mark Bitterman’s Salted more than satisfies. Described as a manifesto, the title contains a useful “Salt Reference Guide” of 150 salts, many of which are Asian in provenance. . . . Salt is salty but if you want to explore their subtle differences, get Salted!”
—Andrea Nguyen, Viet World Kitchen, 2010 Cookbook Picks, 12/11/10
“You might be one of those people who think, ‘Salt? What’s the big deal?’ But turn the pages of this major treatise on the various kinds of salts from around the world (including how they’re harvested and what makes them so special), and you’ll learn what to do with them as well. Mark Bitterman is a selmelier who owns an artisanal-product boutique that specializes in salt. But you don’t need to take a trip there to learn all about salt. Salted is going to be my go-to reference when I find a new type of salt and am wondering what to do with it.”
—DavidLebovitz.com, Favorite Cookbooks of 2010, 12/6/10
“Salt is so essential to cooking that a volume on the topic might seem redundant. Not for Mark Bitterman: His book gets into geeky detail about salt types for flavor academics. However, the "Salting" section, which outlines tips and tricks for coaxing flavor out of your meal with the mineral, is very useful for home cooks.”
—Tasting Table National, 12/3/10
“In the intimidating world of artisan salts, Salted is our new road map and companion. This book is a trove of good information and we will certainly return to its pages again and again.”
“Salt is one of those ingredients that isn’t often dealt with at length, yet is elemental to the craft of cuisine. In his book, Mark Bitterman seeks to educate the cook on the creativity, flavor, and quality that can be enhanced in a dish by using the correct salt. He approaches his subject scientifically, economically, culturally, and nutritionally. . . .After absorbing Salted the reader will understand Cassiodorus’ belief that ‘man can live without gold… but not without salt.’”
—StarChefs.com, Top 10 Cookbooks 2010, November 2010
"Everyone writes about exotic salts but no one says how to use them beyond saying sprinkling them on steak and tomatoes, says [Amy] Sherman, 'but Bitterman does.'"
—FoxNews.com, The Fox Foodie: Sixteen Sweet Cookbooks, 11/30/10
"Whether your only exposure to salt is the box of kosher in your cupboard or you’ve got a gourmet line up, Salted makes an excellent gift for the foodie that has it all."
—Guest blogger Kathy Casey, Al Dente, Amazon food blog, 11/15/10
"In Salted, Mark Bitterman (sommelier at The Meadow in Portland, Oregon) profiles 80 artisan varieties of the magical ingredient. When you’re done geeking out, the recipes — popcorn salted six ways, mango salsa with Hawaiian black lava salt — satisfy cravings."
—DailyCandy, The Best New Fall Cookbooks, 11/12/10
"His new book Salted lays it all out methodically, but the text is far from dry or academic for such an info-packed tome. Bitterman is a great writer, his conversational is clear and funny and, yes, occasionally salty. Though I'm deliberately taking my time to soak up Salted, especially the history and the particulars of each type of salt, reading this book has already caused a sea change in my kitchen."
—Al Dente, Amazon food blog, 11/2/10
"Salted is transformative; it will change the way you cook."
—The Christian Science Monitor, 6 best food books coming this fall, 9/16/10
Bitterman explains that his love of salt began after eating a sublime steak at a relais on a trip to France. After learning about the cooking method and cut of meat, Bitterman concluded it was the "hefty nuggets of opalescent salt" that were responsible for his unforgettable meal, and he set out to meet the family of salt makers responsible. After opening an artisanal-product boutique with his wife, which includes a showcase of salts, Bitterman takes on the role of official "selmelier." In this entertaining and well-researched volume, he profiles 80 varieties of artisan salts, along with a quick reference guide to more than 150 salts for an easy-to-understand crash course on salt. The text-heavy though beautifully photographed title covers the history of salt and all things related. Recipes round out the work, and although pedestrian dishes such as hamburgers, potato chips, and sauerkraut are included, beginners may be intimidated by sophisticated selections like roasted marrowbones with sel gris; salt crust–roasted partridge with figs and chocolate-balsamic syrup; and jal jeer (an Indian lemonade). An informative and easy-to-follow "Cooking on Salt" chapter just may have the more adventurous home cooks and the DIY crowd running out for their very own Himalayan salt block. (Oct.)
—Publishers Weekly, 9/20/10
“Salted is a remarkable work. Written with uncommon energy and style and packed with excellent information and recipes, this book should be considered a must-have for any chef worth their salt and anyone who cares about food and cooking. I love this book.”
—Michael Ruhlman, author of Ratio, The Making of a Chef, Charcuterie, and co-author of The French Laundry Cookbook
“Salted has a transformative effect. Mark embraces not only those magical crystals but also captures you with his passion for people and exploring the diversity of food and salt. His irrepressible will to learn and share is expressed in his writing.”
—Michael Recchiuti, chocolatier, author of Chocolate Obsession
“In this day and age it is imperative to not only know where our food comes from but also to learn about the very thing that brings out all of the flavors we tirelessly source—salt. In Salted, Mark Bitterman takes us on an epic journey, distilling everything from salt’s early formation in the primordial ocean to thoughtful recipes and detailed tasting notes on many of the world’s finest artisanal salts. A virtual encyclopedia of salt, Salted is a wonderful resource for cooks and lovers of great food everywhere.”
—Naomi Pomeroy, chef-owner of Beast Restaurant, James Beard nominee, Food & Wine Best New Chef
More About the Author
Before finally settling down (for now) with his two boys in Portland Oregon, Mark traveled the globe relentlessly. He spent years in Europe on a motorcycle roaming farmers markets, restaurants, forests, mountains, seas, and homes. Eventually he ended up restoring a castle and helping the resident family raise sheep and ducks, forage mushrooms, and hunt guinea hens and wild boar. Today he splits his time between work and his sons, but still seeks out new people and new foods at every opportunity.
Mark won a James Beard Award for his first book, Salted. His second book, Salt Block Cooking, again pioneered new concepts in cooking, leading the charge into the culinary adventure of cooking on salt blocks. His latest book, Bitterman's Field Guide to Bitters & Amari, hits the shelves this Fall.
Mark is the owner of the specialty store, The Meadow (www.themeadow.com), with locations in Portland, OR and New York City. The shops carry among the largest selection of artisan salts, salt blocks, cocktail bitters, and chocolate bars available. Mark is also the founder of Bitterman Salt Co. (www.bittermansalt.co), delivering hand-made salts that unite flavor, sustainability, and social responsibility.
Mark has shared salt and bitters at the Smithsonian, the James Beard House, the French Culinary Institute, the Institute of Culinary Education, Le Cordon Bleu, and with chefs and home cooks around the world.
Cooking Light named Mark a Local Food Hero, and Food & Wine named him a Tastemaker. He has been featured in The New York Times, The Atlantic, O, GQ, Rachael Ray, Wine Spectator, GQ, Esquire, and on The Splendid Table, All Things Considered, Bizarre Foods, CBS News, ABC News, Fox News, MSNBC, CNN, the History Channel, and more.
Top Customer Reviews
This is all you could want to know, explained in an interesting manner with several charts and a 20 page salt reference guide. There are pictures, including illustrations of the different salt crystals described and listed.
The recipes included are a few for each one of the following: those for uncooked foods, curing, grilling, brining, roasting, frying boiling, baking, salt crust, cooking on a salt block, saucing, confections and drinks.
There could have been a source guide with some addresses and recommended web sites, but this would still be ideal for cooks and those interested in the world around us, and one of the most important ingredients throughout history.
I learned that salt could have flavor beyond basic, bland saltiness and that large, crunchy crystals could make a buttered piece of toast absolutely transcendent. I even gave up my previously beloved kosher salt, swapping in a lovely, irregular everyday sea salt for my scrambled eggs and sauteed greens.
My salt education is still in its early days and thanks to Bitterman, I now have a glorious textbook with which I can enhance my studies. I am so impressed by this volume and the obvious love and care that went into its creation. In some ways, it is the author's autobiography, told through salt. In others, it is a highly useful primer on the many different varieties of salt available in the world. In all ways, it is delightful.
The first part of the book attempts to place salt in an anthropological and archeological perspective, but instead makes great big sloppy inferences that were unsupported. It would have read better if it just said "imagine if..." The narrative on medicine also made me cringe, as it had the same rigor as the anthropology section. Term papers that wouldn't have gotten strong grades.
Where the author comes into his own is where he describes the traditional methods for saltmaking and his rather extensive catalogue of artisan salts.
Had thumbed through the book in a store, I might not have purchased.
Of course, learning to taste things means that your tastes shift. Be prepared to start spending more on silly hand-harvested sel gris for every day use, fleur de sel for finishing salt, regional specialties for interesting characteristics...
Yeah, I have 12 kinds of salt next to my stove right now and I'm just getting started.
Most Recent Customer Reviews
Whoa. Just. Wow. The descriptions are off the charts silly. In other sections he sounds fairly normal and relatable. It is bizarre the way he goes back and forth. Read morePublished 6 months ago by TIshTheDish
I like how each salt is noted by it flavor, although some of the flavor descriptions are a little oddPublished 6 months ago by Amazon Customer
The book arrived with damage to the cover a divot cutPublished 8 months ago by Bridget Sullivan Teter
I purchased this because it sounded interesting; you see different salts on the market and I was interested in understanding what some of the differences might be. Read morePublished 8 months ago by lbbrewer
Exactly what I wanted in a book about salt. I am NOT disappointed that there are not more recipes. I wanted the tables of kinds of salt, the history, etc. This is it!Published 10 months ago by On the Cape
I knew some of the history of salt, but Bitterman's was enlightening and comprehensive. He describes everything about this essential element from the formation, mining,... Read morePublished 11 months ago by M. Holmes
I love this cookbook! It absolutely changed the way I cook. My husband and kids have enjoyed the new salts and the new style of cooking. I have used a few recipes as written. Read morePublished 12 months ago by Kile Law