Grilled Peaches With Mascarpone, Honey And Sea Salt
Stone fruit and sea salt make for an easy dish with complex flavor. Ronnie Fein
Here’s the big deal about Maldon Sea Salt: It is vaguely, but compellingly briny, with a distinct mineral taste.
We take salt for granted these days, so it’s easy to forget how important it once was in human history. Today, we get paid a “salary,” because back in the day, the Romans paid their soldiers in salt.
So the stuff isn’t the rare, precious and expensive commodity it once was -- except if you’re talking about Maldon Sea Salt, darling of the culinary world, kosher cooks included. Since 2012, this treasured seasoning has carried kosher certification from the Manchester Beth Din.
Here’s the big deal about Maldon Sea Salt: It is vaguely, but compellingly briny, with a distinct mineral taste, and with none of the harsh, bitter tang on the tongue that you get with regular table salt. Part of its charm comes from the fact that Maldon Sea Salt is made up of pyramid-shaped flakes, not the typical salt crystals, so the tiny pieces melt quickly in your mouth in perfect harmony with whatever food you’re eating.
It’s expensive, to be sure. Which is why cooks in the know use Maldon Sea Salt as a “finishing” salt and not as a cooking ingredient. It’s wasted sprinkled into your pasta water.
But do yourself a favor and scatter a few flakes on a hunk of grilled steak or sautéed liver and feel it melt slowly into the meat as it jazzes up the flavor. You will absolutely love this salt on scrambled eggs or French fries. Summer tomatoes? You don’t need extra calories from olive oil; a few flakes of Maldon Sea Salt will do just fine.
It’s especially incredible paired with sweet foods. If you’re one of those who adore salted caramels, you’ll love your Maldon on chocolate frosted cake and dark fudgy brownies, and over vanilla or butter pecan ice cream. And to make summer desserts brilliant and also astonishingly easy, I scatter just a bit of the stuff onto fruit, like juicy slices of fresh watermelon or grilled peaches, nectarines or plums.
Recently I had some company and got a little fancy with dessert. I mixed some mascarpone cheese with honey and cream and stuffed the mixture into the hollows of some grilled peaches. A sprinkle of Maldon Sea Salt took it to the next level.