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Traditional Croatian producer Solana Pag's fleur de sel comes from the Bay of Pag, which has been known for its salt production since ancient Roman times and even has a Designated Protection of Origin by the European Union. With a name that means “flower of salt,” this flaky, delicate sea salt has a crunchy texture and imparts bright bursts of clean salinity, followed by an almost sweet minerality. And because fleur de sel has a higher moisture content than other types of salt, the crystals stick to each other in flakes rather than immediately dissolving on your tongue, so you get bolder flavor with just a small amount. Unlike with most sea salt—which is collected from the bottoms of salt basins or pans after seawater has evaporated—fleur de sel forms naturally over time as a delicate crust at the water's surface. Even minor changes in wind, humidity or sunshine can cause the salt to evaporate into the air, and it must be harvested by an expert hand—without disturbing the water's surface—or it will dissolve back into the seawater. We consider coarse, flaky finishing salt an essential ingredient to add texture and a complex mineral-rich flavor. A few grains sprinkled over a steak, salad, roasted vegetables or simple bowl of rice adds crisp salinity and crunchy accent. We always keep a bowl on the table in lieu of a salt shaker, often pairing with our favorite garnishing pepper flakes, Aleppo or Urfa.
Use it to enhance our Herbed Egg Salad with Pickled Red Onion or to complement the rich sauce of our Pan-Roasted Asparagus with Herbed Brown Butter Vinaigrette and Walnuts. On the sweet side, delicate fleur de sel is an ideal counterpoint for rich chocolate desserts, such as our Salted Butter Caramel-Chocolate Mousse or Triple-Chocolate Almond Cookies. We also love its clean brightness on a Mixed Berry Crostata or our decadent Salted Peanut and Caramel Tart.
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