Friday, 23 March 2007

Salt is murder

And there is salt. Nature's preservative. I would rank this second in my favourite ways to stop things smelling from going off, after freezing.

The problem with salt is that it also changes how things taste. It is an issue as pepper doesn't have the same preservation properties, and yet they get equal billing on the condiment tray.

"Salt and pepper?" an innocent but naive waitress might enquire. "NO" I would reply, "how could you assume that these two should be grouped, to be cast of as a pair of same weight and importance?! The monolith of salt stands high as a revolution to how we might eat; it has become a great and important commodity, a behemoth in the culinary world. Not to mention its importance in bringing wealth to Assyria, which changed the course of European history! NOT TO MENTION salt being a key part of affecting water around the world, affecting humanity itself! AND YOU PUT IT TOGETHER WITH PEPPER?!" I am no longer allowed in Beefeater restaurants. Their loss.

As I mention in passing above, salts main use in the world is preservation. In particular, the preservation of the world's water. "He's mad!" I hear you cry (at least I hope that was you), but it is true. Without all the salt in the oceans, all the fish would die younger, and the water would all eventually turn to ice. Ice as we know is bigger than water. As a result, the land would get crushed and we would have less land space to live on. Logically the land would be crushed so that it was taller. Luckily at this point, the land would be nearer the sun, and so would be much warmer. In effect, we would live on a dessert mountain plateau surrounded by ice. Still sound mad to you?

So remember, the next time you are at a restaurant (especially stupid Beefeaters), and they offer you salt, take off your jumper to reveal your "salt is murder" t-shirt, and recite to them this passage regarding the dangers of salt extraction from oceans. Yes, you may find comfort in thinking that there are a lot of oceans, but there are a hell of a lot of restaurants, and their number only increases...

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