One question I get a lot is, “which salt to use when canning?” I have done some research on salt. Here is what I have found:
Pickling salt is a specially formulated salt. It looks like table salt, with significant differences. It has a finer grain. This is important; the finer grains dissolve evenly and easily in the water and measure better than course salt. The brine thus has the proper salinity required for safely preserving food. It has no additives, so it is also ideal for fermentation.Pickling salt has no iodine, anti-caking agents or other additives because additives discolor the pickle and make the liquid cloudy. Having no anti-caking agents can cause the salt to clump; to prevent that add a few grains of rice to the salt container, if you are going to use it at the table. You can also spread it on a baking sheet and heat it in the oven to get rid of the lumps. If pickling salt is not easily available, then use kosher salt. This salt is also additive free. Remember though, that this salt will take longer to dissolve. When using kosher salt it is best to weigh it out because it is so coarse it is hard to tell if you have the right amount. One tablespoon of pickling salt weighs precisely 3/4 of an ounce. One tablespoon of kosher salt weights 5/8 an ounce, which is close to the pickling salt, but not the same amount. Do not to use reduced sodium salt as a substitute.Food spoils because of the bacteria and microorganisms it contains. These can be harmful in themselves, because they multiply within the host. In addition, they release harmful toxins. In the process of osmosis, salt draws water from the food —thus drawing out and Killer the bacteria. This reduced water level in the food creates a hostile environment in which the organisms cannot survive. In fermentation, salt helps the “good” bacteria—for example the natural bacteria in cabbage in sauerkraut–while inhibiting the other microorganisms. Sea salt can be used in canning as long as it is fairly refined. One tablespoon weighs 1/2 an ounce. You can use table salt when canning but the pickles will turn a dark color, and are perfectly safe to eat.Canning salts are available in most supermarkets, where other canning supplies are sold. What it all boils down to is Pickling salt is the standard and one tablespoon weighs precisely 3/4 of an ounce. So if you have a recipe asking for one tablespoon salt it needs to weigh 3/4oz . So if you do not want to spend the money on a scale to measure your salt use pickling salt!
Some of this information was found on Marisa McClellan Food In Jars Blog.
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