One of our favorite foodie trends happening now is the use of exotic finishing salts. In Portland, we are lucky enough to have “The Meadow,” a shop that specializes in these special gourmet salts from around the world. (Click here to read a recent article in The Oregonian about the virtues of gourmet artisan sea salts. I promise you’ll never look at regular table salt the same again).
If you’re paying attention, you’ve surely noticed that sea-salted chocolate-covered caramels are gaining popularity with chocolatiers. I personally think it’s a great combo and figure that if chocolate, caramel and salt taste great together, why not pears, caramel and salt?
So I called The Meadow and they immediately recommended “Taha’a Vanilla,” a coarse finishing salt that, as the name suggests, fuses vanilla into Pure Halen Môn sea salt. I rushed right over, and after taking a whiff of the bottle I knew it was the right salt for the job! Back at my friend Alexa’s kitchen, we covered the pears in caramel sheets according to the package directions, and while they were still hot and sticky, we rolled the caramel covered pears in the finishing salt. Much to my satisfaction, the fresh, juicy pear balances wonderfully with the sweet caramel and complex flavor of the Taha’a Vanilla!
If your palate isn’t quite ready for this awesome-ness (ahem…Alexa), you can always stick to the old standby…