Unsalting food
December 27, 2003 10:41 AM   Subscribe

Despite years of cooking, I still occasionally over-salt dishes, particularly sauces. Does anyone have any good tips for how to make an over-salted sauce taste less salty the next day? At the moment I have a curry sauce that is good for several applications; but at the moment it is *salty*!
posted by carter to Food & Drink (8 answers total)
 
I've read that cutting up a couple of potatoes and letting them sit in the dish will absorb some of the saltiness. You may want to google further to find out the exact method.
posted by machaus at 10:58 AM on December 27, 2003


Yep - a peeled raw potato or two works wonders in tomato sauce - in addition to soaking up salt, it also takes a lot of the acidity out. Also, adding a little sugar sometimes cancels out salt.
posted by iconomy at 11:07 AM on December 27, 2003


Yes!! So says the salt institute too. Thanks, y'all!

*runs off to kitchen*
posted by carter at 11:09 AM on December 27, 2003


Seems like a waste of good potato, though.
posted by billsaysthis at 11:29 AM on December 27, 2003


Sauces:
Too Salty -- Add a couple of pinches of brown sugar. It tends to overcome saltiness without adding noticable sweetening.

...and, in the same spirit:

Soups
Salty -- the surest solution is to increase the quantity of liquid without increasing the quantity of salt.

If this isn't practical, try one of the three following techniques:
1. Tomatoes: if it is the right kind of soup, add a can of tomatoes. They are sufficiently bland to use up a pinch of saltiness.
2. A couple of pinches of brown sugar: It won't desalt the soup, but it may help cover up the salty taste without sweetening the soup.
3. Potatoes: Add a thin-sliced raw potato, and keep it in the soup until the slices become translucent; they may absorb some salt from the liquid.

Copied unabashedly from that great garage-sale find: The Something Went Wrong What Do I Do Now Cookbook by John and Marina Bear
posted by bonehead at 11:29 AM on December 27, 2003


billysaysthis: not necessarily! (One of my favourite dishes btw).
posted by carter at 11:35 AM on December 27, 2003


Carter: I rate that dish too but haven't ever really gotten into home cooking Indian dishes...
posted by billsaysthis at 12:16 PM on December 27, 2003


Unfortunately, the potato salt-sucking theory does not stand the test of experiment.
posted by Wet Spot at 5:54 PM on December 27, 2003


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