I'll say! I bought this mini jar at a French grocery store for €2,40 when I could have gotten regular salt for 40 cents a kilo. Well, I just wanted to know/taste what the fuss was about. Chefs and pastry chefs across the world all proclaim this to be the best salt. The textue is very fine, and slightly more moist than regular salt. Keeping it all French, I decided to make sablés. Easy, delicious and full of beurre! Rating: 4 out of 5.
Fleur de Sel Sablés: adapted from Pierre Hermé's Breton Sablés
- 2 ⅓ cups all-purpose flour
- 1 tablespoon baking powder
- 2 sticks (8 ounces) unsalted butter, softened
- ¾ cup + 2 tablespoons sugar
- 1 ½ teaspoons fleur de sel
- 5 large eggs yolks, lightly beaten
- 2 teaspoons fleur de sel, for garnish (optional)
- Sift the flour and baking powder together and set aside for the moment. Working in a mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, cream the butter until it is soft and smooth. Add the sugar in a slow, steady stream, followed by the 1 ½ teaspoons of salt, and continue to beat, scraping the bowl as needed, for about 3 minutes, or until the mixture is light, pale and fluffy. Add the yolks and beat to incorporate. At this point, the mixture should be light, creamy and satiny. Remove the bowl from the mixer and, working with a large rubber spatula, fold in the sifted dry ingredients, taking special care not to overwork the dough.
- Divide the dough in half and, working on a smooth surface, such as marble, mold each half into a log with a diameter of about 1 ½ inches and a length about 8 inches. The dough is going to be baked inside muffin tins, so you might have to adjust the thickness of the logs to the size of the tins: the logs should be about ¼ to ½ inch slimmer than the muffin cups. Wrap each log in a double thickness of plastic wrap and chill for at least 4 hours.
- Center a rack in the oven and preheat the oven to 325°F. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper.
- Unwrap one log and, using a sturdy chef’s knife, slice the log into ⅓- to ½-inch-thick cookies. Place on baking sheet and garnish with a pinch of fleur de sel. Bake the cookies for 12 to 15 minutes, or until they are just firm. These cookies are meant to be pale don’t let them brown: it’s okay if the bottoms are lightly browned, but the tops should remain uncolored. Transfer the cookies to a rack to cool. Repeat with the remaining dough.