I don’t remember how I came across red wine salt, all I know is that I pinned it to my Pinterest board and it had been staring at me for months. I had to find a way to get my hands on red wine salt while trying to avoid international shipping and bulk buying. Then Christmas rolled around and I needed a present for my mother. Usually I have lots of ideas for her but this past year I just had no clue. So I decided that a homemade gift would do great this year and why not say Merry Christmas with wine salt. A bit of searching and I found some recipes to use as inspiration. Some recipes used lemon zest, others sugar. I decided to go with the most simple version, red wine and coarse sea salt.
Half a bottle of wine, brought to a boil then simmered until reduced to 2 tablespoons.
One cup of coarse sea salt, keep an extra half cup on hand incase necessary
Once the wine has cooled mix in the sea salt, if the mixture is still very noticeably wet keep adding in the sea salt until most of the wine has been absorbed, avoid adding too much salt since you want all of the salt to be this beautiful ruby-purpleish color without lots of white specks. Spread the salt onto a baking sheet to dry, the more room it has the faster it will dry. Mine took about 2 weeks in a large baking dish. After letting it dry, pour it all into a blender or food processor and grind until it becomes a bit finer.
The basic recipe is delicious and beautiful but the possibilities are endless, pick different types of wines, use the lemon or perhaps an orange zest, or go for herbs to diffuse in the wine or in the salt mixture.
You can use the salt in any way you want, my favorite is on a piece of pita bread with mashed avocado and a sprinkling of red wine salt, mmmm. I have also used in a coq-au-vin to give it just to give the dish another wine flavor boost.
The funny part about christmas is that not only did I give my mother the red wine salt present but I also got salt as a present for Christmas. A mini tin of take-along salt flakes for when I am in a salt emergency and only delicious salt will do.