This month KO Rasoi is ecstatic to be taking part in the International Incident Salt Party hosted by Penny from the delicious blog Jeroxie: Addictive and Consuming.
Every month the party has a different theme and each participant creates a dish based on that. They post on the same day and at the same time- just like a regular party. This month’s theme is salt and dull it certainly isn’t.
There are hundreds of different salts used for various purposes and they all have their own individual flavours. Some are mellow, some sharp and some completely bizarre. For your feasting pleasure, I picked the salt with the oddest flavour I could possibly think of. Black salt. The crystals of this salt are black, but when they’re ground into a fine powder they take on a dusty pink hue. Gorgeous. And peculiar.
Probably every Indian will have tasted black salt (or kala namak/sanchar) and if you ask them what it tastes like they will grin from ear to ear. You see, black salt may appear to be sitting pretty in pink but one whiff of it and you’ll be wondering on of two things:
A) Who’s been cooking eggs?
B) Who ate a too many chickpeas and now has gas?
I’m sorry I had to put it so bluntly but it’s the only way to emphasise the pungent, sulphurous smell and taste of this notoriously whiffy Indian salt. When used in cooking it takes on a mellow but distinctive taste which is characteristic of classical Indian favourites. They just wouldn’t be the same without it.
Black salt is used in plenty of Indian dishes and you have probably eaten it lots of times without even realising it. It’s a common ingredient in chaat, pani puri, tamarind chutney, salted lassi, raita, dhai vada (lentil dumplings in spiced yogurt sauce) and the super famous Indian ‘sweet’ Hajmola! When I say ‘sweet’ I mean a salty, spicy digestive aid. All together now, ‘Mmm!’
There’s no better way to make use of black salt than in a faux egg dish. Scrambled tofu yearns for a sulphurous twang, and black salt is just the ticket! This dish makes a great breakfast just by itself or on toast and it’s really good for you. Please don’t be put off or intimidated by black salt because it’s such a beautiful and wholly unique ingredient which, when used in the right way is surprisingly mouthwatering.
You could also try:
1) Sprinkling a little black salt, chilli flakes and chopped coriander over crisp French fries.
2) Making a date and tamarind chutney with lots of black salt, chilli and fennel powder.
3) Tossing raw, sliced green apples and pieces of green mango into a dressing of olive oil, black salt and black pepper.
Scrambled Tofu with Edamame and Black Salt
2 cups silken tofu, mashed lightly with a fork
¼ cup edamame, shelled and cooked
½ tsp oil
1 small onion, chopped finely
2 small hot green chillies, minced
½ tsp cumin seed powder
½ tsp cumin seeds
½ tsp coriander seed powder
½ tsp turmeric
¼ tsp black salt
1 tbsp double cream (optional)
Chopped coriander to garnish
1. Heat the oil in the pan and add the cumin seeds, chillies and onion. Sauté until the onions are translucent.
2. Add the edamame, cumin seed powder, coriander seed powder and turmeric. Cook for a minute or so until aromatic.
3. Add the tofu and black salt and cook on a medium heat for 3-4 minutes. Stir in the cream and remove from the heat.
4. Garnish with chopped coriander and serve on toast or my favourite way- in a bowl with a spoon!
Thanks to Penny for hosting this party. I look forward to seeing all of the other entries and can’t wait to take part in another!
Enjoy your spicy, creamy Scrambled Tofu because regular old Scrambled Eggs just went out of fashion at this salt party!
Don’t forget to check out all of the other entries- the participants are listed below!