1 Minute Meyer Lemon Salt

We’ve been playing around with salt around here at Casa Stacie, making our own flavorful seasonings to spice up even the most basic recipes in our repertoire. Since we’ve caught the bug, there always seems to be a collection of special salts in tiny bowls on the  kitchen counter and we make sure to keep them in easy reach so we can grab a pinch as we’re cooking, tossing a salad, dressing pasta.

All you need is a little good quality salt of your choice and a bit of imagination. You can easily dry any sorts of leafy herbs within seconds in your microwave and crumble them into salt. We like to use this method to make celery salt with leftover leaves from a head of celery, but you can use pretty much anything to flavor up your salt: from matcha green tea, to sichuan peppercorn, ground dried porcini, fennel and crushed red pepper, or our newest favorite meyer lemon (supplied by my mom’s tree). The heavenly hint of meyer lemon you get when seasoning with this salt adds an extra dimension to a green salad with a tangy dressing, to fish or poultry or really to anything calling out for a little extra zing. How about lemon or lime salt for the rim of your margarita glass? …. that’s what I’m talking about!

The main thing with DIY flavored salts is to make sure your salt mixture is bone dry if you are planning to store it in a jar. If you have concerns about moisture you can dry your custom salt on a cookie sheet at 200 degrees for an hour or even store it in the freezer.  We prefer to keep things easy peasy by making tiny batches and leaving our salts open to the air to avoid any storage issues. Once we use up one flavor, we know it’s time to dream up another.

1 Minute Meyer Lemon Salt

  • This has to be one of the fastest “cooking” projects around — just zest your lemon with a microplane grater, stir it into some kosher salt and it’s ready to use. It will keep for several weeks on your counter.
  • Choose an unwaxed lemon and make sure to scrub it well before zesting.
  • If you do not have a microplane grater, remove the outermost layer of peel — yellow only, avoid the white pith — and mince it as finely as you can.
  • We like a ratio of about 1 teaspoon of zest (about 1 small lemon) to 2 tablespoons of salt, but you can play around with the proportions to suit your own tastes.

You might also like these pantry projects: Ginger At the Ready, Infused Liquors, “Special Sauce”: 2-Day Tomato Conserva

Homemade Celery Salt

 

DIY Celery Salt 3 copy

Celery is one of those ingredients most of us don’t usually give too much thought to. It’s often on our plate, but rarely is it ever the star.  Does it go too far to say that celery gets no respect?

Well celery is having it’s moment in the sun as far as Luca is concerned. It could have something to do with his recent discovery of that tride and true snack favorite “ants on a log” or how celery lends itself to playing a game of who can make the loudest crunch. We’re riding this wave of celery love by thinking up different ways to celebrate the one and only apium graveolens. Think crunchy salads of tart apples, matchstick carrots, and thinly sliced celery drizzled with tahini dressing; grandma-style chicken soup with big, rustic hunks; and long spears with almost any kind of dip you can think of.

One of our more entertaining experiments was making our own celery salt. This couldn’t be easier and makes for a versatile seasoning with pretty flecks of zingy, bright green. If mom or dad happen to enjoy the occasional Bloody Mary, even better!

Homemade Celery Salt

You can use this in place of regular salt whenever you want a hint of celery & you can use this easy microwave drying technique for any leafy herb. You might be tempted to make a big batch and store it, but I think this salt loses its brightness after a week or two. So I would suggest just making this in small batches and using it right away.

  1. Trim the leaves from the head of celery, discarding any stems, and dry very well. Place the leaves on a piece of parchment paper in a single layer without overlapping them.
  2. Microwave the leaves in 15 second increments until they are totally dry and very crisp. The amount of time will vary depending on your microwave and the size of the leaves. We went a little too far and burned a few, so we can definitely recommend going with very short bursts and letting them cool down as needed between zaps.
  3. When your leaves are totally dry and crisp, just crumble them into your favorite flaky salt. A ratio of 2 parts salt to 1 part celery is nice. One caveat: if you seal your celery salt in an airtight jar and there is any moisture at all left in the leaves, your salt can get  kind of funky, so make sure the celery is really dry. When in doubt, leave it uncovered and open to the air in a place where you can easily grab a pinch as you’re cooking.

And finally, a few celery themed doodles by me and Luca:

Celery Pool Party Color_A Little Yum