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Old 03-17-2017, 10:40 AM   #1
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Why Salt Makes Things Sweeter

I used to think that the 1/4 teaspoon of salt in that recipe for 36 cupcakes didn't make a difference. I mean, what is that, 5 grains of salt per cupcake? I've stopped adding it to rice pudding because I figured I didn't miss it.

But, there's a scientific reason why you want that little bit of salt:

There's a scientific reason why a pinch of salt makes things sweeter

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Old 03-17-2017, 12:35 PM   #2
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Theoretically one could cut back on a little of the sugar in a recipe by including a pinch of salt?
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Old 03-17-2017, 12:44 PM   #3
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Whiskadoodle View Post
Theoretically one could cut back on a little of the sugar in a recipe by including a pinch of salt?


Yes, if you're willing to settle for less than full chocolate and sweet flavors.
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Old 03-17-2017, 12:47 PM   #4
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Interesting piece of information, Late Night. Intuitively I've put a "touch" of salt in things that, from reading the recipe, would seem to be perked up by adding salt. It has been my cooking experience that a whole dish will come more alive by even the tiniest bit of salt. This applies to sweets, too.

Let me add that I've never been much of a salter. When I prepare a meal that calls for salt, I'll begin with about half called for in the recipe, taste and see what I think. May add more, may not. I rarely salt at the table.

I've been cooking for 60 years and there are lots of little discoveries I've made by experience and trial and error. Perhaps that's why I enjoy cooking as much as I do. And...I include baking in cooking because, for me, that's part of my cooking world.
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Old 03-17-2017, 12:55 PM   #5
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Yes, if you're willing to settle for less than full chocolate and sweet flavors.
O for goodness NO. So much for that idea.
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Old 03-17-2017, 01:46 PM   #6
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Salt also reduces the perception of bitter flavors. http://www.todayifoundout.com/index....hances-flavor/
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Old 03-17-2017, 02:34 PM   #7
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Salt is a flavor enhancer, so it's reasonable that it would enhance "sweet" too. The trick is to use enough to enhance, but not so much that it tastes "salty".
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Old 03-17-2017, 03:34 PM   #8
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I have found when making a sweeter pizza dough add more salt, not sugar.
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Old 03-17-2017, 04:10 PM   #9
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Salt is so interesting. I love salt, and almost always add it to sweet goods as well. But like many people, I stick to the most unrefined salt possible, such as gray Celtic sea salt. Lately, I've been using red Hawaiian salt, and grinding it myself.

Speaking of science and salt, apparently adding salt to raw eggs about 15 minutes before you cook them is supposed to make them a lot more moist. I've done this, with good results. I've also heard that adding salt to whipping cream is supposed to help it whip better. I do add a pinch when I whip cream, but I don't know if there's a scientific reason why it would help in the whipping. In my experience, at least it doesn't seem to hurt any.
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Old 03-17-2017, 08:33 PM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by neptune View Post
Salt is so interesting. I love salt, and almost always add it to sweet goods as well. But like many people, I stick to the most unrefined salt possible, such as gray Celtic sea salt. Lately, I've been using red Hawaiian salt, and grinding it myself.

Speaking of science and salt, apparently adding salt to raw eggs about 15 minutes before you cook them is supposed to make them a lot more moist. I've done this, with good results. I've also heard that adding salt to whipping cream is supposed to help it whip better. I do add a pinch when I whip cream, but I don't know if there's a scientific reason why it would help in the whipping. In my experience, at least it doesn't seem to hurt any.


I don't think most people stick with the most unrefined salt available at all. For cooking most people use kosher salt or table salt. The salts you mentioned are more often used as finishing salts as their subtle flavor differences get lost in the process of cooking.
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