4 litre's of sea water worth

Have you ever thought of making your own? I hadn’t despite living right next door to the Pacific Ocean for the last four years. I didn’t think of it until a friend suggested trying. I was sold on the idea just for the experience but have also been enjoying the fruits of our labour since.

Here’s how we made our salt or ‘Crab Pot Bight Salt” as we affectionately dubbed it. The water was collected from the bight where we catch crabs in the far side of the local harbour.

Sea Water

Salt water is 3.5% salt. I was shocked to see with my own eyes what that meant and how much salt we made per litre.

We used a filter of cheese cloth and paper towel, “just in case”, but it’s doubtful it was necessary because any impurities in the water would have been in suspension in the water anyhow. That means we would not be able to mechanically remove them, however boiling them would.

Filter- probably not neccessary

There are a number of different ways to make salt from salt water. All of them having to do with boiling away the water but the details vary. You can boil it in a heavy bottomed pot or in a long pan over two elements. You can boil half the water and then add the other half when the first is boiled down…. too many techniques to share.

Boiling away

We tried two simple methods to see which of the two would be better. We used a long roasting pan over two elements and a heavy bottomed pot. Turns out our bets were right and more surface area of course boils away faster, but not by much. After about three hours of boiling, the ten minutes saved using the roasting pan didn’t feel that significant.

Crystals forming


About half of the day's take

16 Responses to Salt

  1. Katherine says:

    That is so cool! Thanks for posting that. :o) K

  2. Lucy Dolan says:

    Good idea. We could make some North Sea or Atlantic sea salt! I wonder if it works pouring a thin layer water into a large shallow container and letting the sun do the work (in summer!)

  3. Perfect Genius!
    Seriously I had never thought of doing that and just THINK of the money we can save since I buy the good minerally salts!
    This is so exciting to me Annie!
    Seriously cool.
    *giddy giggle*

  4. Katie says:

    I get such a kick out of this kind of thing! How cool. I am reading “my side of the mountain” with my 8 year old, and it says in there that you can make salt from hickory bark- a better bet for those of us in Kentucky!

  5. A says:

    What a great project! We live by the ocean too, I can’t wait to do this with the little ones when we learn about the ocean!

  6. Lise says:

    Wow. I have been loving figuring out how to make my own _______ (insert formerly-thought-impossible item here) lately, but NEVER thought of salt! Of course! This is genius.

  7. Debbie says:

    That is AWESOME! I would love to do that…but won’t have much luck here in Southwestern Ontario.

    BUT…the next time we head east or west…I’m packing lots of containers! :)

  8. nadia says:

    how great! i just made vanilla extract fro holiday gift along with flavored sugars! how great it would be to add this to teh package! how much sea water did you start off with, how much would you recommend taking form the sea for a few small jars?

  9. Vanessa says:

    and how cool is that? VERY.

    Thanks for stopping by the bloggity-blog. :)

  10. How interesting! We live near-ish the sea so I will definitely try this!

  11. that is so awesome. my boys would love that. we will be trying this soon. thanks for posting.

  12. tai says:

    So great. Maybe I’ll load up from your bight next time we come to visit!

  13. Annie says:

    Lucy- The sun would definitely work, given enough time and intensity. Ah, solar drying/cooking is a bit out for us here.

    Nadia- the last picture in this post is salt from about 8 litres (2 gallons) of sea water.

    Thanks everyone for finding this as cool as I did! I was giddy to try this out. Can’t wait to do more.

  14. Dawn Suzette says:

    Annie, this is seriously cool! First saw it… well first saw it when I learned about Ghandi… but lately saw it again in the River Cottage Family Cookbook… Great fun!

  15. kristen says:

    How cool!! Wish I lived near the sea!

  16. sarah says:

    that is so cool! wish we lived near salt water to try it…

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