Driving to Nong Khai towards the Mekong we suddenly started to see lots of roadside stalls selling salt and then I remembered nothing grew here because the land was so salty …No rice…Nothing!
Proud of their salt producing heritage there is now a 3 day Salt Festival with talks, educational displays and the most beautiful sculptures crafted from salt.
Before I show and tell you about the salt I will show you how I use salt …Which produces the most succulent fish you have ever tasted and eaten with Som Tam Green Papaya) Salad and Sticky Rice ( Kow Neow) is one of the most amazing meals you could wish to eat.
Just take 3/4 stems of lemongrass and tie in a knot, stuff it in the cavity of the fish and then roll the fish in sea salt do not descale the fish as it will not stick. Put on a BBQ and cook until fish is just cooked, nice and juicy turning the fish a few times this takes about 30/40 mins and you will have the most succulent fish you have ever tasted.
How is the salt produced:
Thailand’s unique cuisine with its sweet, sour, bitter, spicy and salty tastes which combined make a Thai meal so memorable. Salty eggs, fish, salt are used in many dishes and the most iconic Thai fish sauce takes pride of place on every table. A meal would not be complete without salt or fish sauce being used in every dish or as a condiment.
Do not try to put salt in a traditional western salt grinder or shaker as due to the humidity here it will just clog or cause the grinders cogs to rust.
Used firstly as a preservative long before fridges were invented, salt has become as essential as breathing.
Here in Thailand it is not only used in food but in the spa industry. Now, who hasn’t been to Thailand and hasn’t had a traditional Thai massage?
From popular skin exfoliating, scrub massages it has great anti-bacterial properties and helps to prevent itching and provides relief from insect bites and stings.
Add lemongrass to your salt and a wonderful massage will let all your stress and jet lag just fade away.
How is salt made?
The ponds are flooded with salt water and left for about 10 days until the sun has evaporated the water leaving the salt, which is then collected and carried away in shoulder baskets to be bagged ready for sale.
There is very little if any shade on these salt flats to protect the workers from the sun and it is hard heavy work.
Health Benefits of Salt.
For years I have been warned about the use of too much salt whereas here because of the heat and humidity I have used more salt in my cooking and diet.
I have changed the salt I use and use Pink Himalayan Salt or more recently as we live close to the above salt flats I use the mineral salt fresh from there.
The taste is vastly different from the salt I used to buy and I use less as it is saltier but since living here my Blood pressure is now normal…and for those who know me I have never been normal…lol..but it is.
Asians have for many years believed that we have an energy body as well as a physical body. All of our glands, organs, blood and skin consist of cells. They believe that our health depends on the health of those cells. Different cells require more or less of cell salts e.g nerve cells require larger amounts of cell salts but blood cells carry a higher amount of certain cell salts.
Hence salt plays a larger role in the diet in Asian countries as they believe cell salts provide a rebalancing of the body to enable its natural disease function which controls the bodies mechanism to function fully.
I am finding northern Thailand such a lovely place to live the people are friendly and I am discovering so many fruits, vegetables and ancient crafts which are still being used and passed down to generation after generation.
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