Have you given much thought to the kind of salt you use? Salt may seem like an insignificant topic, but if you want to take steps toward a less-processed diet, it’s something to think about. Basic table salt is first processed at high temperatures, removing vital minerals from the salt, then it’s iodized, bleached, and mixed with anti-caking agents (examples include: ferrocyanide, yellow prussiate of soda, tricalcium phosphate, alumine-calcium silicate, sodium aluminosilicate). Iodine is an vital mineral that supports thyroid function, body metabolism and reproductive tissue health, just to name a few. The Dietary Reference Intake (DRI) is set at 150-1,100 mcg a day. But the amount of iodine in a moderate serving of iodized salt is 1,520 so it is easy to exceed the daily limit using even a modest amount of salt.
On the other hand, a quality, gently-processed, sea salt can offer a myriad of beneficial characteristics. A few brands I’ve found that fits the bill are Celtic Sea Salt, Real Salt, . It’s hand-harvested off the coast of France, dried at a low temperature and contains no additives, bleaching agents or anti-caking agents. Celtic Sea Salt provides over 80 trace minerals, helps balance electrolyte levels, and helps balance alkaline/acid levels.
I prefer cooking with Celtic Sea Salt not only for its health benefits, but also because of its flavor. The grains bring a subtle saltiness and compliment foods better than any other salt I’ve tried. Salt makes a great example of the entire theme of this blog. I think you’ll find the flavor better than table salt and your research will make you thankful for the health benefits of the change.
I love the simplicity of these green beans blanched and tossed with brown butter. Who can pass that up? And I recently read in the Wise Traditions Journal it’s better to eat your vegetables with a good organic butter because the butterfat enables the carotenes in the vegetables to convert to vitamin A. Toss them with some sea salt, and pumpkin seeds and you’ve got a delicious side dish.
Green Beans with Brown Butter and Pepitas
3 tablespoons unsalted butter
1 pound green beans, cleaned and trimmed
2 cloves garlic, minced
1/2 cup roasted pumpkin seeds (I coat mine in a little coconut oil and roast them at 400ºF until golden brown)
Sea salt and freshly ground black pepper
Melt butter in a large saute pan over medium-low heat until brown and fragrant, about 2-3 minutes, swirling the pan occasionally. Add green beans and toss in the butter until there are spotty brown marks on the beans, about 3-4 minutes . Make a well in the center of the pan and add the garlic. Stir garlic in the center of the pan until fragrant, about 30 seconds and then stir into beans. Remove from heat, toss pumpkin seeds into the beans, then season with salt and pepper to taste. Serve immediately.