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Somewhere between a pinch and a dash is a smidgen, and when it comes to good cooking, a smidgen can make all the difference! Smidgen is the home cooking podcast of Red Stick Spice Company. Join host Anne Milneck as she talks about food, home cooking, how to use spices, and the joy of making flavorful meals that your whole family will love. You'll also get to follow Anne into the Red Stick Spice Test Kitchen for a live cooking session that will give you the meal inspiration you're looking for. 

May 5, 2022

Salt is essential! Whether it’s to enhance flavors or get necessary minerals into our diets, salt cannot be divorced from cooking. But should salt and pepper—often thought of going together—be split up? We’re getting salty on this episode of Smidgen, with Anne heading off to the salt mine (so to speak.) JQ Dickenson Salt-Works has been producing salt in West Virginia (you read that right) for over 200 years. Nancy Bruns is a chef and along with her brother Lewis Payne are continuing the family tradition of harvesting salt in Malden, West Virginia. Nancy joins Smidgen host and owner of Red Stick Spice Company Anne Milneck to discuss how salt is made in a land locked area, and what kinds of flavors home cooks can expect to experience when trying different unrefined salts. 

Then to put some of this salty knowledge into action, Anne heads to the kitchen to make Rosemary Focaccia with Finishing Salt. 

Mentioned on the show:

- The JQ Dickenson Salt-Works website is a wealth of information and an attractive showcase of their offerings. Visit to learn more. Want to know how salt is made? Interested in how a modern salt-works can harvest salt in a sustainable way? Watch the JQ Dickenson Salt-Works videos here.  

- What is unrefined salt? 

- Make your own batch of No-Knead Rosemary Focaccia. Take Anne’s tip and try different salts on top of this delicious bread to get a sense of the variety of qualities and textures that can be found in various salts. 

- Start your salty exploration by peeking at Red Stick Spice Company’s selection of salts on our website. Red Stick Spice Company has dozen of salts to choose from

- Should salt and pepper get a divorce

- Throwback to Rosemary Gill talking spices (and revealing the origins of the salt/pepper divorce question) on Smidgen, Season 2. Listen to the episode here

- What’s the problem with recipes saying salt and pepper to taste at the end of the recipe?

- How do I get the Red Stick Spice Company newsletter with recipes and cooking ideas? Sign up for our newsletter here

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Hear all Smidgen episodes on Apple PodcastsSpotifyGoogle Podcasts, Pandora, or your browser, or your favorite podcast app.  Smidgen is the award-winning podcast of Red Stick Spice Co.