A taste enhancer - as well as one of the four basic tastes - salt strengthens the impression of aromas that accompany it and suppresses the sensation of bitterness.

Salt is not just necessary for giving flavour to savoury meals. A pinch added to sweet dishes and baking, such as in salted caramels or in chocolate chip cookies, will enhance flavour and balance sweetness, giving pleasing depth and complexity.

Some salts are grey, black or pink because of the presence of seaweed, clay, ash, iron or other elements. However, these elements only affect flavour a little as they are usually present in very small amounts.

It is the shape, size and density of salt crystals that make the most difference to how we perceive the intensity of the salt flavour.

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