No salt in my rice or noodles, so why add it to pasta water? The sauce will season it enough, and besides, I like a bit of bland in my food


But I’ve always thought – isn’t that what the pasta sauce is for?

I do usually put a pinch of salt in, not because I think the taste will improve, but it’s supposed to make the water boil at a higher temperature.


Perhaps our mindset is influenced by our Asian cooking background. As far as I know, no Chinese person puts salt into the water when they cook rice. I can already imagine the if some BBC chef puts a tablespoon of salt into a rice cooker.

“Salt da rice! Woman, you are keeeling meee!”

What would Uncle Roger say if we added salt when cooking rice?

I don’t do it for rice, rice noodles, egg noodles or any other starch product that accompanies sufficiently seasoned dishes. We also don’t need salt if we’re putting the noodles in a broth that is presumably umami-enriched with enough MSG to require two cans of cola to wash down.

Ask any ramen chef if they need to cook their noodles in salted water and they’ll say, no, and that it’s a waste of salt. Also, when folks under the weather or with digestion problems order , they assume it is just plain rice gruel.

Believe it or not, we don’t always require sustenance that stimulates our taste buds.

Plain congee should be plain. Leave the salt out. Photo: Shutterstock

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