March 27, 2013

At the Taking-It-With-a-Large-Grain-of-Salt Café...

Untitled

... don't believe everything you hear.

That's an actual grain of salt served in my portion of bacon and eggs this morning, by Meade, who alerted me: "Watch out for the large grain of salt."

(It's Cyprus Flake Mediterranean Sea Salt.)

45 comments:

Ann Althouse said...

And watch out for Cyprus. I heard they're taking 40% of your money.

Meade said...

Yeah, I'd get my salted-away assets out of there if I were you.

Mitchell the Bat said...

"That's the second biggest grain of salt I've ever seen."

-- Maxwell Smart

chickelit said...

Probably equal to a day's salary for Roman soldier.

rehajm said...

Foodies love the fancy salt thing. I'm on board except for the stuff that reeks of sulphur.

This place in Naples is big on it, too.

Bob R said...

Is that a flake or a rock?

MadisonMan said...

One reason I like Maldon Sea Salt is you also get crystals that large.

Bob said...

Does it really make a difference to the food? I don't have that sophisticated a palate, myself.

chickelit said...

Is that a flake or a rock?

It's halite.

Hagar said...

I am getting tired of watching Greta van Susteren go all rapid-fire falsetto about Government waste, fraud, and abuse in this, that, or the other field.

Someone needs to explain to her that President Obama and the entire present Democrat Party leadership do not regard these instances as "waste, fraud, and abuse," but stimulus and "investments," and they are all good.
Perhaps not as good as direct investment in their individual pet projects, but good.

sydney said...

My father-in-law used to talk about a version of Hayden's Seven Last Words of Christ that consisted of the music interspersed with a narrator reading poetry about death and dying. I haven't been able to find anything like that. Is anyone here familiar with the work? I would ask my father-in-law, but he died last year.

bagoh20 said...

Face centered cubic crystal structure.

edutcher said...

I've been doing that since 11/6/12.

PS Apparently Krauthammer has noted the Cyprus thing is how wars get started.

Damn time, the euros have had it way too soft for too long.

traditionalguy said...

But add iodine to that evaporated sea water if you like good health.

The history of salt as a commodity in warm climates is fascinating. Salt mines and evaporation pools were the Big Oil of its day; when refrigeration was as yet unknown and only the North Sea world had ice in winter.

The diet of the Mediterranean Sea world was primarily salted fish.(We call the small ones anchovies.)

bagoh20 said...

One thing I found fascinating in college, where I had geology as a minor was learning about mineralogy and the crystal structures, and how the invisible arrangement of atoms resulted in shape, hardness, and color, which is often very different from their color of strike when powdered by rubbing on unglazed porcelain.

That and the drunken field trips to the Adirondacks to collect rocks. Good times.

rcommal said...

Sydney: Are you referring to something like this?

Haydn: The Seven Last Words Project - Sunday, March 25 @ 3:00pm

Our next concert is this Sunday! Join us in London for an afternoon of music & poetry celebrating the Easter season, with a performance of Haydn's The Seven Last Words of Christ. We're joined by the actor Richard Mulholland in his reading of Poem After the Seven Last Words, by Pulitzer Prize-winning author Mark Strand.

sonicfrog said...

I've seen large.

Signed;

Mike Alexander, the former geology student.

rcommal said...

http://www.villiersquartet.com/vsqnews/march-25-haydn-seven-last-words-project

sydney said...

rcommal,

That might be it. Do you have a link? Is that a BBC production?

William said...

I saw Argo last night. In the film, a Hollywood producer says that if you work all day in bullshit, you bring it home to your family. So true. And you bring that same commodity to your politics.....The movie didn't have any large explosions or naked women, but it held a modicum of interest. Muslim fanatics were portrayed in a bad light, and CIA operatives in a good light. So that's a step forward for Hollywood.....The movie, despite a high bullshit content, was credible and generated some real suspense......One of many quibbles: The Hollywood version of history maintains that all of Iran's troubles stem from our overthrow of that nut case back in the fifties. Persia has a four thousand year history of despotic governments, and that one CIA coup was responsible for all its problems. They really believ that.

rcommal said...

Sydney, here's a link that explains the work (different source). Sorry not hyperlinked; too much of a pita on mobile.

http://brentanoquartet.com/notes/haydn-seven-last-words-of-christ/

rcommal said...

Iif you can't paste in browser, I'll be happy to make a hyperlink for you from my laptop or iPad when I get back frim dropping off my kid at a workshop in an hour or so.

sydney said...

rcommal,
Thanks. I think that is probably it. Doesn't look like it is available in a recording or download, though. Oh, well. One of those things to just keep an eye open for in anticipation of the little joy one gets when finally found.

Cedarford said...

In engineering materials courses, you get into crystal structure and certain metal and non-metallic crystals were used as examples in class of types of crystals encountered on a much smaller structural level that helped define material properties. In metal alloys, concrete, electronic components, etc.
Big cubes of salt were "par for the course" and examination under microscope of iodized salt crystals, metal oxide layers, sugar crystals, concrete crystal structure, crystals at concrete-rebar interfaces, quartz clock crystals, pyrites, acid etched steel samples, etc., etc.

Remember a "cultured salt crystal" in the display that was 4 inches to the cube side.

Try chewing on THAT ONE if served with breakfast!

ndspinelli said...

Murder by sodium..sinister!

wyo sis said...

That could loosen a filling!

Cedarford said...

Hagar - Hagar said...
I am getting tired of watching Greta van Susteren go all rapid-fire falsetto about Government waste, fraud, and abuse in this, that, or the other field.

Someone needs to explain to her that President Obama and the entire present Democrat Party leadership do not regard these instances as "waste, fraud, and abuse," but stimulus and "investments," and they are all good.


Not much different than the Republicans. Just a different pack of thieves at work under Bush, DeLay, Hastert, and so on.

TARP for the bankers.
18 Trillion in full price drug entitlement to Big Pharma.
100s of billions squandered in defense contractor boondoggles all claimed to "benefit the Heroes Who Serve".
Bridges to nowhere.
'Hastert's Highways' to his real estate holdings.
Trillions in tax cuts billed as an "investment in job creation" for the Hero Rich Jobs Creators to create millions of great, good-paying jobs.

The decline of America, squandering of funds to indebt us to China, and the government-party donor oligarch "pay to play and feed at the hog trough" problem didn't start with Obama.

Just that Obama and his people did the same stuff and the liberal/progressive Jewish run media were loyally silent on Obama's peeps "waste, fraud, and abuse."
Bush and his cronies BAD!!
Obama and his cronies GOOD!!



ed said...

Sea salt.

For people who don't realize that salt is salt, that underground salt mines are the remains of ancient oceans and there is no practical difference between table salt and sea salt.

-or-

Have fun with your food and use food coloring to dye your salt in odd colors, claim it is a highly reserved sea salt only available on donkey back from Freedonia and watch people go nuts trying to google it.

Hagar said...

That all depends on how much refining either goes through.

AprilApple said...

Don't put it in the bank.

John Evans said...

The Seven Last Words of our Saviour on the Cross, Op. 51

http://youtu.be/oQ1EjrH0U3w

Tibore said...

"(It's Cyprus Flake Mediterranean Sea Salt.)"

Looks like that one "grain" is close to our daily allowance for the stuff. :-S

Julie C said...

I highly recommend the book Salt: A World History by Mark Kurlansky.

Miss Conduct said...

My first thought glancing at the picture, without reading the caption, was that the squarish flake was blotter acid! Something I haven't seen, let alone thought about, since the mid-80s.

Jeffrey Steingarten wrote about blind-taste-testing of foofy salt in, I believe, "It Must've Been Something I Ate." My dimly recalled conclusion is that people couldn't distinguish among the large-crystal salts very well without knowing which they were eating. I absorbed the message that for flavor, kosher salt applied as a condiment after cooking is all you need.

Bob_R said...

Yes, the flavors of salts are pretty subtle, but the flakes give a nice crunchy texture. For low carb, you'll take all the crunch you can get.

Palladian said...

there is no practical difference between table salt and sea salt.

That's not true at all. Refined table salt contains sodium chloride, often iodine, and little or nothing else. It has a consistent sodium content. Sea salts, and other unrefined culinary salts, contain widely variable levels of sodium, and usually contain up to dozens of other minerals and substances. The crystal structure of sea & unrefined salts is also extremely variable, which can impart different textures to foods when added as a finishing salt.

My favorite salts are French sel gris, Maldon, Kona and a nice, fine, pinkish "Jurassic" salt from Utah. For baking and recipes requiring more precise additions of salt, I use Diamond Crystal.

madAsHell said...

Oh...it's a salt crystal.

I was having flashbacks of window pane.

chickelit said...

I keep some potassium iodide (KI) on hand in case the local nuclear power plant blows up.

Hermann Göring kept KCN on hand in case things got out of hand.

Salts can save or take lives.

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rcommal said...

Sydney, if you're still around, I don't know that a performance of the version you're referring to exists. In addition, a page of the website of the Brentano String Quartet, which commissioned the poetry used in that interpretation, that particular performance project isn't currently available for booking. It also does not appear it was recorded (at least, it's not included in the ensemble's discography).

By the oddest of coincidences, I did at one time, a long time ago, have an acquaintanceship with a member of that quartet (because that person was among the founders of a chamber music festival which my husband and I helped underwrite, financially, for a couple or so years, way back when we had money to do stuff like that, LOL). Anyway, I've been thinking about "small-worldishness" all day, and I'm more than half-tempted to dig out an old address book and just call and ask if there's a recording out there of that version, any where. Or at least if it will go back into performance rotation at some point or another.

I also was inspired to listen to other versions of that Haydn piece, and as well as other Haydn. All and all, it was an unexpectedly pleasant afternoon, music wise, and I thank you for bringing up the topic in this cafe thread.

ken in sc said...

Sydney, “My father-in-law used to talk about a version of Hayden's Seven Last Words of Christ that consisted of the music interspersed with a narrator reading poetry about death and dying. I haven't been able to find anything like that. Is anyone here familiar with the work? I would ask my father-in-law, but he died last year. “

We sang part of it in church last Sunday. Soloists sang the words of Christ and we in the choir sang the “He is blood guilty” part. The sheet music had a narrator's part between the movements, but I did not read it because we didn't use it.

Largo said...

chickelit : "It's halite."

So eating this is what gives you halitosis?

*ducks*.

squirting

sydney said...

rcommal,
You're welcome.

I remember my father-in-law being particularly fond of this piece with the poetry. He had a tape casette of the performance that he said he played often after his wife's death. He said it helped him get through a difficult time. I have a CD of a quartet performance of the music, but no poetry. I also have many of my father-in-law's old casettes and CD's and even LP's - but none of them are the Seven Last Words with poetry.

rcommal said...

To be clear, it *could* be a different interpretation, a different performance & etc. No way of knowing exactly, without knowing what he was listening to. There are other possibilities. I haven't had time to pursue those. Initially, I didn't look into that because of how I happened to read your original post. It is entirely possible that I was **reading into** and it just happened to trigger some patterns and recollections. In any case, Haydn is pretty grand, that piece is glorious, and I feel lucky that there is even any question as to version & etc., because that means it still lives! Which is a great, good something, I think.

sydney said...

Yes, I understand his recording could be different. I did find this just now. The poetry is between the movements. I wonder how many permutations of Last Words and poetry have been done.