Have you ever heard of Korean bamboo salt? If not, it’s something you should know of. Find out what makes it expensive, what it’s used for, and why people don’t mind spending so much on it.
Many consider Korean bamboo salt, or jugyeom, a luxury ingredient, while it is a must-have in the kitchen for others. While not the most expensive component, like caviar, Korean bamboo salt still has a high price tag.
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Find out what makes it expensive yet so popular, especially for Koreans. Despite its price, many still don’t mind paying a high price for it regularly.
How much does Korean bamboo salt cost?
Korean bamboo salt reportedly costs US$100 for 250 grams. This means a dollar per 2.5 grams of salt! To put things into perspective, 250 grams is only 8.82 ounces. This means you’d be spending US$100 per 8.82 ounces or over US$11 per ounce.
While this might not seem like a lot to some, it’s important to note that regular salt costs around US$6 for 78 ounces. Because of the price difference, Korean bamboo salt can be considered a luxury. However, some people are still willing to spend the difference because of what Korean bamboo salt has to offer.
Why is bamboo salt so important to Koreans?
Bamboo salt is also known as purple salt and has been part of Korean culture for a long time. In fact, for ages, bamboo salt has been part of traditional Korean culinary dishes.
Aside from food, bamboo salt has also been used in traditional Korean medicines due to its therapeutic properties. This salt has long been part of Korean culture and remains a popular ingredient in some Korean dishes.
However, in the Western world, it’s hard to find recipes that specifically require Korean bamboo salt. As a result, some recipes that initially used bamboo salt are sometimes replaced with regular salt, especially where bamboo salt isn’t accessible.
How is Korean bamboo salt prepared?
The preparation process for bamboo salt takes longer than regular salt. In fact, without the proper equipment or ingredients, it would not be easy to create this type of salt.
To create bamboo salt, sea salt is placed inside a bamboo case. Usually, it’s filled to the brim, or at least a significant amount is stuck inside the bamboo case. After that, the bamboo case is then roasted at high temperatures. The roasting process helps fortify the salt with the minerals from the bamboo.
This process then helps change the color of the salt and its shape, making it rock shaped. The salt is then broken down to finer measurements and packaged to be sold.
How long does bamboo salt take to prepare?
While we mentioned the process of roasting the bamboo case, the process has to be repeated to create traditional bamboo salt. The process is repeated nine times, where sea salt is stuffed into a bamboo case and roasted over very high temperatures.
Each time, the bamboo case has to be roasted at very high temperatures, and to do this correctly, the process could take 40 to 45 days. So this means over a month to a month and a half.
What are the benefits of bamboo salt?
Bamboo salt carries unique benefits, like being good for digestion and oral health. While salt is naturally known not to be good for the body, bamboo salt has some advantages when eaten in moderation. These purple salts reportedly improve digestion and oral health, which are just a few benefits. It is reportedly also used in skincare and carries anti-inflammatory and anti-cancer properties.
Bamboo salt also has a mineral-dense composition and packs a lot of potassium, calcium, and iron, compared to regular sea salt.
The primary reason why bamboo salt is costly compared to regular salt is because of its long history and proven medicinal benefits.
The process of preparation also attributes to its high price. However, it’s also important to note that not many places make bamboo salt, and most of the time, it has to be delivered, which pushes the price up further.