4 DIY Infused Salt Recipes for the Holidays

This unusual DIY can make a great Christmas gift, too.
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This unusual DIY can make a great Christmas gift, too.

Adding infused sea salts to your cooking is a great way to add both complexity and depth to any recipe. The good news is you don't have to spend a fortune on specialty salts—they’re easy to make and can be infused with a variety of flavors.

I love experimenting with different combinations of herbs, fruits, wines, and spices. While I primarily use these as finishing salts, sprinkled on juicy tomatoes or topped on my favorite cookies, they are also great for meats, soups, sauces, vegetables, and desserts. Or try rimming your cocktail glass to add a unique twist to your favorite drink.

sea salt, recipe, cooking

In addition to using them in your own kitchen, these salts also make a creative hostess or housewarming gift. I especially love making large batches of different flavors to have on hand for the holiday season.

When creating these infused salts, it's best to use a coarse or flaky salt. Here are four of my favorite recipes.

FIG + LEMON ZEST
I adore this infused flaky sea salt heavily rubbed on white fish.

sea salt, recipe, cooking

Ingredients
½ cup flaky sea salt
2 tablespoons lemon zest
4 figs, stemmed and sliced

Directions
Preheat oven to 300 degrees F. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper and set aside. In a small bowl, add sea salt and lemon zest. Mix together with a spoon, pressing on the zest with the back of the spoon to release the citrus oils. Add the sliced figs and combine together. Spread mixture across prepared baking sheet. Bake for 15 minutes. Allow to cool, toss together, remove the figs, and transfer to an airtight jar. Store for up to 2 months. If using within the week, you can keep the figs in the salt and store in the refrigerator.

sea salt, recipe, cooking

PINOT NOIR
Best sprinkled over vanilla ice cream and served with something chocolaty.

sea salt, recipe, cooking

Ingredients
½ cup flaky sea salt
½ cup your favorite Pinot Noir

Directions
Preheat oven to 300 degrees F. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper and set aside. In a small bowl, add sea salt and wine. Mix together. Spread mixture across prepared baking sheet and bake for 15 to 20 minutes, until the salt is dry and the liquid has evaporated about 95 to 100 percent. (The mixture will look very wet going into the oven but will mostly absorb and dry.) Allow to cool, toss together, and transfer to an airtight jar. Store for up to 2 months.

sea salt, recipe, cooking

ROSEMARY + GRAPEFRUIT ZEST
Rub onto a whole chicken and roast until crisp. Or make a grapefruit margarita and rim your cocktail glass.

sea salt, recipe, cooking

Ingredients
½ cup flaky sea salt
2 tablespoons grapefruit zest
1 tablespoon fresh rosemary, chopped

Directions
Preheat oven to 300 degrees F. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper and set aside. In a small bowl, add sea salt and grapefruit zest. Mix together with a spoon, pressing on the salt and zest with the back of the spoon, releasing the citrus oils. Add the rosemary and combine together. Spread mixture across prepared baking sheet and bake for 15 minutes. Allow to cool, toss together, and transfer to an airtight jar. Store for up to 2 months.

sea salt, recipe, cooking

GREEK OLIVE
Best served with lamb or added to soups to brighten the flavor.

sea salt, recipe, cooking

Ingredients
½ cup flaky sea salt
¼ cup chopped Greek olives

Directions
Preheat oven to 300 degrees F. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper and set aside. In a small bowl, add sea salt and olives. Mix together, then spread across prepared baking sheet. Bake for 15 minutes. Allow to cool, toss together, and remove olives. Transfer to an airtight jar and store for up to 2 months. If using within the next 2 weeks, leave the olives in the salt and keep in the refrigerator.

sea salt, recipe, cooking