Salt of the Earth

Dear Rose,What's the big deal with kosher salt these days? It seems that many of the TV cooks specify it rather than regular salt, in everything from vegetable dishes to baked goods. I seem to recall learning that kosher salt should not be substituted in cakes, etc., because it doesn't perform the same as regular salt. For example, a recent program called for kosher salt in the meringue for a lemon meringue tart. Any thoughts? Debbie

Rose Response debbie, i'm jewish, i write bibles, and i still don't use kosher salt in baking! o.k. i'll get serious. this is an excellent question. here's the scoop: it is thought that kosher salt dissolves more readily less readily (see comments below!) than other salts which is useful when sprinkling on meat, chicken, or eggplant. but there are two kinds of kosher salt--morton which is granulated and diamond which is flaked or fluffed up so that it takes up more volume. if you use this salt you will need 1 3/4 times to equal the same weight or saltiness as the granulated. the only valid reason i can see for calling for kosher salt is that it isn't iodized which can give an unpleasant taste to baked goods. i use fine sea salt for all my baking. it's easy to measure and is not iodized.