Author Topic: Salt Concentration  (Read 120 times)

Offline Green Cheese

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Salt Concentration
« on: March 24, 2016, 10:57:52 AM »
I'm new to the forum and cheesemaking (see my introduction): http://cheeseforum.org/forum/index.php/board,49.0.html. My question is about the sodium concentration in different types of salt. In her book, Caldwell seems to recommend Diamond Kosher Salt. So I used it to make brine for my first cheese this past weekend (I now know that pickling or canning salt is fine for making brine). The recipe called for 23% brine and I made the solution using weight to volume and felt good about the brine. Later, checking the label and comparing it to Morton's Table salt, I realized that the Diamond Kosher salt contains 280mg of sodium in 1/4 tsp while Morton's Table salt contains 590mg. That's over twice the sodium! I realize the importance of salt in cheesemaking as it halts the microbiological activity. Did I not have enough sodium in my brine and what effect may this have on the cheese? 

Offline Green Cheese

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Re: Salt Concentration
« Reply #1 on: March 24, 2016, 11:08:59 AM »
Sorry, I see the answer now and looks like I'm OK. While the sodium measurements are for 1/4 teaspoon, the weight of the salts are different. In fact the Morton's weighs twice as much! 1/4 tsp of Morton's weighs 2g while the Diamond weighs 1g. 

Offline Kern

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Re: Salt Concentration
« Reply #2 on: March 24, 2016, 01:08:21 PM »
The sodium always comes with the chloride so the difference between the two measures is only a result of the bulk density of the two salt grades.  Here is a link to a table showing what you discovered.  Credit to Al Lewis for first finding this.

Most experts recommend using non-iodized salt for cheesemaking.
« Last Edit: March 24, 2016, 01:14:29 PM by Kern »

Offline Al Lewis

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Re: Salt Concentration
« Reply #3 on: March 24, 2016, 02:58:41 PM »
As Kern said the only main difference is the size of the grains.  Coarse Kosher Salt has large granules whereas table salt is finer.  I buy table salt in a 20 pound bag for cheese use.  Just be certain it is NOT iodized salt.  Iodized salt is not suitable for use in cheese making as the iodine could have a slight sterilizing effect. It also tastes terrible, to me anyway. If you have a restaurant supply store, Cash & Carry, nearby you can get regular un-iodized Morton table salt for about $7.00 for 20 pounds.  That does a lot of brine/cheeses.
« Last Edit: March 24, 2016, 03:06:14 PM by Al Lewis »
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