The very best kind of salt for all cooking is, in my opinion, English sea salt from Maldon, in Essex. It's not a powdery pouring salt that contains chemicals to stop it getting damp and make it pour freely, but an absolutely pure salt that tastes of the sea. If you do a side-by-side tasting you'll find it is less sharp but somehow saltier (so you need to use less).

Maldon salt consists of very pretty, small white crystalline flakes that crush very easily between your fingers for cooking with. For the table, use it either in a good-quality salt mill or a small salt cellar. Crushed sea salt gives jacket potatoes a really crispy crust, and it's wonderful coarsely crushed over chips (or anything fried).

I once discovered by accident, sitting at a restaurant table, that a fat, chunky chip wrapped in a rocket leaf, then dipped first in mayonnaise, then in sea salt, is a quite wickedly brilliant combination!

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