Cooking with sea water

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Grian
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Cooking with sea water

Post by Grian » Thu Apr 12, 2018 11:27 am

Probably a silly question, but for rice, pasta, noodles etc that would be cooked in salted water is this a done thing? Too salty?

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Re: Cooking with sea water

Post by Chris Bolton » Thu Apr 12, 2018 12:22 pm

Yes, much too salty. I only tried it once!

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Re: Cooking with sea water

Post by Grian » Thu Apr 12, 2018 12:29 pm

Yes, much too salty. I only tried it once!
Thought so, wonder what the optimum dilution rate is...

Apparently you can buy it to cook in...!
It is one water source that will never run dry. A Scottish entrepreneur has started selling his country's most abundant natural resource - the sea - at more than £1.50 a litre, more than the price of petrol.

Atlantic sea water - artfully rebranded "Acquamara" - is already being supplied to a top West End restaurant and there are hopes that it will start appearing in London delis soon.
The fact its being boiled should make it safe from pathogens? Just don't source near a fish farm or where there's algal bloom?

ETA findings from elsewhere:
1:2 seawater/fresh for veg and 1:3 for pasta.
Sea water is around 3.5% salt. So 100 ml contains 3.5g salt. That is about 3/4 of a teaspoon.

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Re: Cooking with sea water

Post by OMarti » Thu Apr 12, 2018 1:02 pm

Grian wrote:
Thu Apr 12, 2018 12:29 pm

ETA findings from elsewhere:
1:2 seawater/fresh for veg and 1:3 for pasta.
I used the 1:3 proportion for years on small sailboats.

Olivier

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Grian
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Re: Cooking with sea water

Post by Grian » Thu Apr 12, 2018 1:06 pm

I used the 1:3 proportion for years on small sailboats.
Is it an especially nice flavour? Could you tell a difference from water with sea salt added?

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Re: Cooking with sea water

Post by OMarti » Thu Apr 12, 2018 2:54 pm

Grian wrote:
Thu Apr 12, 2018 1:06 pm
I used the 1:3 proportion for years on small sailboats.
Is it an especially nice flavour? Could you tell a difference from water with sea salt added?
I didn't make a review of the water I sail on, and cook with ... But I don't remember noticing any special taste. I don't do that to close from the shore anyway.

Olivier

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MikeB
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Re: Cooking with sea water

Post by MikeB » Thu Apr 12, 2018 7:58 pm

Grian wrote:
Thu Apr 12, 2018 11:27 am
Probably a silly question, but for rice, pasta, noodles etc that would be cooked in salted water is this a done thing? Too salty?
I do it regularly - as noted by others, it's a little salty but I don't find it excessively so although I will sometimes dilute with fresh. In answer to the question as to whether there's any noticeable difference between salted water and sea water in terms of flavour, the answer is "no".

I'm amazed that there are people who (seemingly) are prepared to pay significant amounts of money for fancy salts. Or even for sea water. But I'm really just envious that I'd not had the idea myself.

If I want to add real flavour to pasta or rice, I use Marigold Bouillon Powder instead of salting the water. Also adds a certain something to proper Irish stew and lots of other things.

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Re: Cooking with sea water

Post by Owen » Thu Apr 12, 2018 8:20 pm

If you use dilute sea water for cooking, do you use the same dilution ratio for sea water from different seas?

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Re: Cooking with sea water

Post by Grian » Thu Apr 12, 2018 9:19 pm

Owen wrote:
Thu Apr 12, 2018 8:20 pm
If you use dilute sea water for cooking, do you use the same dilution ratio for sea water from different seas?
No! Apparently not. Maybe you knew that but it was news to me. Well not exactly about cooking. The book recommended on here by Tristan Gooley points out that ships have a plimsoll line and then some markings for the same measure in different seas! I think that was it anyway. I only finished it two days ago, definitely one to reread. Great for annoying people with sentences starting ‘did you know’.

Re the seawater sales. Could there be a similar market for midges... apparently people in China buy jars of air from welsh mountaintops.

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Re: Cooking with sea water

Post by Robert Craig » Fri Apr 13, 2018 11:16 am

I use about 50%:50% for potatoes.

50%:50% means one splash of sea water, one splash of fresh water. 100%

Priority is not getting sand in the potatoes, rather than an exact ratio. All fresh is too little salt: all sea is too much.

Can't think of any situation where the water wouldn't be boiled, so no worries about bugs.

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Re: Cooking with sea water

Post by OMarti » Sat Apr 14, 2018 10:40 am

The various plimsoll lines on big boats are there to take into account difference on water density that comes more from temperature than from salinity, except in cold polar water. Generally sea water salinity is between 30 in Arctic waters and 40 permil. Could be lower near River mouth and higher in eastern Mediterranean. And of course in the Black Sea. No need to worry for your cooking ! The Baltic sea in an exception with salinity around 10 to 6 permil.
.

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Jim
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Re: Cooking with sea water

Post by Jim » Fri Apr 20, 2018 5:14 pm

I've used sea water for cooking, never thought about diluting it or noticed the pasta or rice tasting salty.
The alleged reason for adding salt to the water when cooking is to raise the boiling point which has always seemed like a very nitpicky thing to do, I wonder if what it actually does is raise the specific heat capacity rather than the temperature, so that the water has more energy when it comes to the boil, so that putting the cold rice/past/spuds in has less impact on the boil?

Just remember not to use sea water for making tea, or diluting soup etc. :)

I normally wash up with sea water, or if camping near a stream with stream water (washing up with stream water and washing up in a stream are importantly different).

All tactics to make the tap or treated water last as long as possible.

If your pans aren't non-stick, soil, sand and tea bags all work as scourers for an initial wash (you will want a secondary wash to get rid of sand or soil).

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Re: Cooking with sea water

Post by Ceegee » Sun Apr 22, 2018 5:32 pm

Owen wrote:
Thu Apr 12, 2018 8:20 pm
If you use dilute sea water for cooking, do you use the same dilution ratio for sea water from different seas?
No! In the Aland islands (northern baltic) we used it neat for rice, pasta etc. It was also fine for washing brushing teeth etc. The salt concentration is about 1% there. In the med it can be over 4%. Interestingly, supermarkets in Mallorca sell litre tetrapacks of seawater, which I'm guessing people cook with (they are also big on fully diluted stocks or "caldo" for paella). Surprising given that the place is surrounded by the stuff!
Cheers,
Steve C. G.

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