Pink Salt is commonly sold in the Philippines.  Which Kind is it?

Do you know what you are getting? There is a natural pink salt, sold in Hawaii or maybe it is the Himalayas.  What we are talking about here has nothing to do with it.  We are looking at two common mixtures of chemicals for preserving meat.  Pink Salt, also known as Prague Powder, InstaCure, and other trade names, is made to help preserve meat.  And there are two (2) kinds of it.  The manufacturers color it pink so you won't use it to "salt" your popcorn or other food directly.  It has to be used in carefully measured amounts and should never be substituted for regular salt.  It is not another form of sea salt, kosher salt, or rock salt. 

And remember, we said they make two forms of it?  Prague Powder #1 or InstaCure #1 have sodium nitrite in it.  That is intended for curing bacon, hotdogs and foods that may be cooked at a higher heat and that will not be cured by drying in the air for an extended period of time.  Bacon, whether dry cured or wet cured (brine) fits this category.

Prague Powder #2 or InstaCure #2 or Pink Salt #2 has sodium nitrate in it.  Sodium nitrate occurs naturally in many different foods including some most people consider very healthy.  Celery, beets, and carrots to name a few.  But when used for curing meat, it is limited to use in meats that are cured for an fairly long time, hung to dry and age in the air, even though that usually means in a temperature and humidity controlled room.  And it is forbidden to be used in making bacon in the USA. 

So what about the Philippines?  Our experience is that time and time again we found Pink Salt being sold as simply that.  For curing meat, to be sure, but no one had an idea if it was Prague Powder #1 or Prague Powder #2.  And that is a problem for you and the people that you feed.  Whether making sausage or bacon, you need to know what your ingredients are.  If your "Pink Salt" is not labelled, it is better not to use it.  Don't take a chance with your family's health. 

Bacon Cure #1 uses the Type 1 cure, which contains sodium nitrite.  No sodium nitrate, the stuff of Pink Salt #2.  It is formulated to accepted standards for the content and amount of sodium nitrite for curing bacon and other meats.  Use good products and know what your food is made out of.  That is common sense regardless of the color! 

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    We love bacon! Here we talk about different approaches, flavorings, and both success and failures we have as we make bacon at home. 

    We make it twice a month at a minimum.  It finds its way into lots of dishes. 

    We love food in general, bacon, burgers, hotdogs, pizza, and ice cream are all high on our list of comfort foods.


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