When two people do not see eye to eye on certain matters, the senior individual can end the argument by uttering the invincible Cantonese saying: “I eat more salt than you have eaten rice.”
This means the older person has been around and has far wider experience in life than the younger one.
Well, the younger person can always throw back the saying and ask exactly how many kinds of salt the older person has tasted so far. That just might win the argument.
Salt, or coarse salt, costs no more than a few cents per kilogram at the grocery store. Salt is a necessity but it generates little money, so it is often placed at the bottom of supermarket shelves.
The snowy table salt is the most common type of salt that we use to spice up our dishes.
Some say using overly white salt is unhealthy as most of its minerals have been removed during the production process.
Then, all of a sudden, people are chasing after rock salt from some unknown ancient mountaintop, or natural sea salt.
Even that won’t do for some people, who will pay several hundred dollars for a tiny bottle of “flower of salt” – a kind of sea salt hand-harvested by workers who scrape only the top layer of salt before it sinks to the bottom of large salt pans.
I’ve got four types of salt in my kitchen: Himalayan crystal salt, Okinawan sea salt, ancient rock salt mined from the Alps, and French-made flower of salt.
In order to try out other kinds of salt, I headed to YOHO Mall in Yuen Long, looking forward to dining at SALT Recipes, a Scandinavian restaurant inside Homeless Furniture Store.
On the table I was welcomed by six kinds of exotic salt. The pink one was surely the Himalayan crystal salt. Next to it were some sesame-like black Hawaiian sea salt, reddish Alaea Hawaiian sea salt, Brittany’s gray sea salt, and blue Persia salt.
I sat by the window, enjoying the grilled tiger prawns lying on a brick of Himalayan crystal salt. It occurred to me that Yuen Long is not quite far away, only about 40 minutes from Hong Kong Island by car.
It is definitely a good idea to spend a relaxing weekend afternoon here.
This article appeared in the Hong Kong Economic Journal on Dec. 16.
Translation by Darlie Yiu
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