Flavor without salt: 6 Italian secrets

Flavor without salt: 6 Italian secrets

Sep 25, 2021Donatella Mulvoni

Are you trying to cut back on sodium in your diet? Here are our culinary tips for tasty recipes without using too much salt. 


Cutting back on salt is always a good idea

Consuming too much salt is not suitable for our health. It may increase the risk for high blood pressure and cardiovascular disease. Jason Howland of Mayo Clinic News Network says: "A new study published in The BMJ found that cutting salt intake not only reduced blood pressure in patients with existing hypertension, but it did so for those who were not yet at risk. The study also showed that the more salt you take out of your diet, the greater the fall in blood pressure." Salt is also the leading cause of water retention; that's why even in a low-calorie diet, its consumption is greatly reduced.


Boosting flavor without salt

Cooking without salt or at least decreasing its quantity does not mean to renounce to taste. Here we give you some pieces of advice. You can lower the use of salt without sacrificing flavor. Cutting the salt can be challenging, but you can control the sodium in your diet with a bit of effort and some strategic tips. Here are our six tips for seasoning your dishes at home with less salt. 


1. Citrus fruits

Adding lemon juice or orange to your dishes will make them tastier and enrich them...as if you were on the Amalfi Coast. Use the whole fruit, juice, and peel, as it is the peel that contains the aromatic part.


2. Vinegar

Vinegar is the perfect substitute for salt. Its acidity will enhance vegetables, meats and fish. We have a wonderful collection of balsamic vinegar: delicate and very tasty.


3. Spices

Spice up your food and add flavor without accumulating empty calories or salt. Spices such as pepper, hot pepper, garlic, and nutmeg are perfect, have many medicinal properties, and help digestion.


4. Herbs

Italian cuisine includes the use of many aromatic herbs. Italian houses' pantries are never missing basil, rosemary, oregano, parsley, thyme, sage, laurel, and chives. You will often find them fresh, in fragrant bunches. In Italian, we call them "gli odori", literally "the flavors." Chop your herbs and mix extra virgin olive oil: this herb-infused oil is delicious on season grilled veggies, fish, or meat.


5. Vinaigrette

Create light, salt-free vinaigrettes by simply using vinegar, lemon and adding a few herbs to taste. 

The traditional Italian vinaigrette mixes extra virgin olive oil, pepper, vinegar, and a pinch of salt. Try to skip the salt! Often it is simply a matter of habit.


6. Garlic and onion

With their intense aroma and flavor, these two ingredients have always been considered excellent aids to reduce the use of salt. They can be added both cooked or fresh.

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