“[A] mesmerizing mix of recipes and food history.” —Publishers Weekly, STARRED REVIEW
“Duguid has a scholar’s love of research, a cook’s hunger, and a journalist’s talent for storytelling. . . . The recipes are from all over the world and her knowledge is staggering. . . . Simply brilliant.” —Diana Henry, The Telegraph (U.K.), The Best Cookbooks to Buy in Autumn 2022
Naomi Duguid, who’s taken food lovers to many corners of the globe, now invites readers and cooks on a very different journey—a deep dive into the miracle of salt and its essential role in preserving, fermenting, and transforming food.
Learn age-old techniques for making sauerkraut, miso, butter, prosciutto, kimchi, salt-fermented pickles, basturma, salt-preserved lemons, brined eggs, and much more. Create a vibrant “salt pantry” filled with enticing blends of salt and spices, and with easy condiments and preserves such as Spiced Green Mango Pickle and Dried Shrimp and Garlic Chutney. Read about essential salt-preserved flavorings such as soy sauce, fish sauce, pickled plums, salted anchovies, and salt cod.
The wide range of international recipes that follow invite you to use this umami-rich larder of salt-preserved ingredients and salted flavorings to transform vegetables, soups, mains, pasta dishes, and desserts. Orange and Black Olive Salad balances tangy and salty. Black Bean Sauce adds intense flavor to stir-fries. Bacalao Tortilla is a nod to salt cod as a cornerstone of European kitchens. Shio Koji, a simple salt-fermented ingredient, flavors grilled vegetables and other foods with subtlety and power. Kebabs marinated with a blend of pomegranate molasses and fish sauce are a triumph of salty-sweet-tart umami. And there’s nothing like a layer of saltiness to bring out the best in sweets and desserts, from Creamy Candied Ginger and Miso Ice Cream to Yogurt Cake with Salted Lemon and Nuts, from Breton Salted-Butter Cake to Miso Cookies with Dark Chocolate Chips.
Working with salt-preserved and salt-fermented ingredients not only opens up a rich new world of flavors and techniques but also offers cooks the gift of connecting with generations of culinary wisdom.
About the Author
Naomi Duguid is a writer, photographer, traveler, and home cook. Her recent cookbook Taste of Persia is the winner of a James Beard Award, an IACP Cookbook Award, and a Taste Canada Award. Her book Burma: Rivers of Flavor is also an IACP Cookbook Award and Taste Canada Award winner. Her six previous award-winning titles, co-authored with Jeffrey Alford, include two now-classic cookbooks that won the James Beard Award for Cookbook of the Year: Flatbreads & Flavors: A Baker’s Atlas and Hot Sour Salty Sweet: A Culinary Journey Through Southeast Asia. Naomi leads small-group food-immersive trips to the Republic of Georgia and elsewhere. She is a Trustee of the Oxford Symposium on Food and Cookery, and is a frequent guest speaker and presenter at food conferences, particularly those focused on grains. She lives in Toronto. Follow her on Instagram and Twitter at @naomiduguid.
“[A] mesmerizing mix of recipes and food history. She begins with salt’s effects on flavor and texture, which include tenderizing, muting bitterness, heightening sweetness, and strengthening the gluten in some doughs. . . . Duguid makes a convincing case that instead of modern dispositions to simply ‘watch’ overall salt intake, cooks can better learn to judiciously wield its flavorful powers.” —Publishers Weekly, STARRED REVIEW
“Duguid has a scholar’s love of research, a cook’s hunger, and a journalist’s talent for storytelling. . . . She explains how [salt] works, how it’s used to ferment and preserve, how to make miso, sauerkraut and basturma, and what to cook with salt-preserved ingredients, such as fish sauce, salt cod and kimchi. The recipes are from all over the world and her knowledge is staggering. I wish Duguid had written this 20 years ago but we’re lucky she’s done it now. Simply brilliant.” —Diana Henry, The Telegraph (U.K.), The Best Cookbooks to Buy in Autumn 2022
“Naomi Duguid does not write mere cookbooks, but immersive explorations of a place or topic withrecipes. Think of The Miracle of Salt as a super fun and authoritative course book with luscious photos. The topic, salt, is ubiquitous and essential, and it takes a special writer like Ms. Duguid to avoid cliché, cover necessary ground and also surprise and delight readers and cooks. A big chunk is devoted to the traditions and techniques of preserving and fermenting food, but this tasty tome also covers starters and sides, mains (mostly veg, some meat and fish), desserts and drinks. I don't have a major sweet tooth, but I can't resist a cookie or bowl of ice cream with a salty kick, so that's what I'll be gravitating towards. I've never had a miss with any of her recipes — they are as trustworthy as a Swiss clock, but casual like a favourite pair of jeans." —CBC, Booksellers Share Their Favourite Releases of the Season
“The Miracle of Salt is a marvelous achievement that not only demonstrates why salt is a permanent fixture in our kitchens but also reinforces this staple ingredient’s impact on culture and society across the globe.” —Nik Sharma, author of the James Beard Award–nominated book The Flavor Equation
“If you’re looking to explore new flavors, ingredients, and techniques—plus understand the cultural context that brought them forward—there is no better guide than Naomi Duguid. In The Miracle of Salt, she will introduce you to a whole new world of salty, umami, richness and inspire you to reimagine even your most classic recipes with fermented and preserved flavors.” —Einat Admony, author of Balaboosta and Shuk