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Abq

Dec 7, 2002, 9:25 AM

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Salt Lakes In Mexico???

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I know this is a long shot-- but does anyone know of anyone hand harvesting salt in Mexico?



ET

Dec 7, 2002, 10:40 AM

Post #2 of 15 (5053 views)

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Re: [Abq] Salt Lakes In Mexico???

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"Abq" writes:
....does anyone know of anyone hand harvesting salt in Mexico?


Not quite the same, but starting in the 1700's, Spain started extensive mining and exportation of historic salt deposits, centered around what's now the state of Colima. Cuyutlan, south of Manzanillo continues to have a thriving sea salt business. Susan Dearing has a puff piece article on the town and the "virtues" of sea salt on her gomanzanillo website - the direct link to the article is http://www.gomanzanillo.com/features/salt/index.htm. You might also be able to get additional information from the Colima state Ministry of Tourism, who makes brief mention of Cuyutlan and salt. The general website for the ministry is http://www.visitacolima.com.mx/english/.


Gary sculptari

Dec 7, 2002, 12:42 PM

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Re: [Abq] Salt Lakes In Mexico???

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I have just the article you need, it is "Produccion de sal en la cuenca de Cuitzeo, Michoacan" by Eduardo Williams, in Arqueologia Mexicana Vol 5, num 27. It covers salt harvesting techniques from prehispanic, up to today. There are pictures of modern day harvesting at the site, but my spanish is not good enough to know whether this is a recreation or a commercial operation, or both. Elsewhere in the journal is all known salt harvesting sites del Mexico antiguo (also gems, minerals and metals). There is also a bibliography to the article.

You could help me out by tracking down whatever happened to this journal and company. The website seems to have disappeared, but I still see references to it. Maybe a casualty of government cutbacks? Back issues should be in any Mexican library. Voices of Mexico is another wonderful journal which seems to have disappeared. Que lastima.


(This post was edited by Gary sculptari on Dec 7, 2002, 12:45 PM)


Abq

Dec 7, 2002, 4:10 PM

Post #4 of 15 (4994 views)

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Re: [Gary sculptari] Salt Lakes In Mexico???

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Thank You !!!!!!!!! I was not able to find the journal but I found a web site featuring Eduardo Williams and I e-mailed him. I'm hoping they might still be harvesting salt the old way on Lake Cuitzeo. I'll let you know if I hear from Mr. Williams!


Abq

Dec 7, 2002, 4:12 PM

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Re: [ET] Salt Lakes In Mexico???

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Have you tried the salt from that area? I would be interested to know it the salt has a unique taste.


Gary sculptari

Dec 7, 2002, 5:33 PM

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Re: [Abq] Salt Lakes In Mexico???

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Haven't tried this salt or seen it on the market - but I love that salt from France - I think it is called Celtic salt - I threw away the label last week. It cost about $5 for 100 grams - but then it is the little pleasures in life that make a difference. I think you are on to a winner here, good salt and good pepper is delicious - and the story of salt in Mexico is interesting. Table salt actually contains sugar, and also iodine (like flouridation, forced as a public health issue). Cooking with salt makes a huge difference - for example 'brining' - you presoak a meat in brine solution, it pulls all the water out and concentrates the flavor - but does not make the meat salty at all.

If you run into problems, email privately with a fax number I can send to.

I have always admired the food entrepreneurs, there is lots of opportunity in Mexico. I wish I was the guy/gal who thought of growing mushrooms in the abandoned mines of Mexico!


Abq

Dec 7, 2002, 6:53 PM

Post #7 of 15 (4977 views)

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Re: [Gary sculptari] Salt Lakes In Mexico???

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Thank you for the support, especially meaningful as this is a new venture for me. Actually, the salt I have in mind is in Nueva Mexico. I've just acquired a state salt lalt lease to harvest the salt in our salt lakes here. My grandfather was the last person to make a success of the salt business in our natural salt lakes. Of course, back then they didn't have the designer salts. Now all I need is some expertise. Who better than Mexico than to tell me how?

Saludos desde New Mexico Salt Company


Gary sculptari

Dec 7, 2002, 7:22 PM

Post #8 of 15 (4980 views)

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Re: [Abq] Salt Lakes In Mexico???

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The first rule of business is that you will make 4,223 mistakes before you are successful - the second rule is never believe statistics or internet experts! So no matter what happens, go out and make your first mistake.

I think the health angle has been done to death. Yours is the salt with gusto! Particularly for rims of margarita glasses, ceasar drink glasses, tequila shooters (what a waste!), snacks and popcorn. Maybe a mix of salt and chile pods aged together? Just an idea - I mean tabasco made a fortune off 'fermented' (the $10 word for rotting) chile in vinegar. Establish a brand name and logo - something maybe the potato and corn chip manufacturers might pick up on.

Certainly any taste test with salt 'a' - mortons table salt and salt 'b' the gusto salt would win instant fans. Real salt just has a subtle bite. The bad news is that I often use kosher or pickling salt with the same effect - but that will be our secret. The American marketers say 'sell the sizzle, not the steak' and this is good advice.

Good luck. I would be a customer. I love those old fashioned logos and ads from the Mexico 1960's - I've attached a small one below
Attachments: showpid.jpg (14.9 KB)


Mereja

Dec 8, 2002, 12:43 PM

Post #9 of 15 (4943 views)

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Re: [Gary sculptari] Salt Lakes In Mexico???

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I just got back from the Cuitzeo area. I have visited there every year for the last 14 years and have never seen or heard anything about Cuitzeo harvesting salt. The lake is not salty. If you find out anything else about this, let me know so I can check it out next time we go. We drove around a lot this time and explored little towns and places in the area and my husband, who is from there has never mentioned anything about salt. My mother-in-law buys the kind of salt that is not little grains. I can't remember what they call it. I will ask my husband.


Abq

Dec 8, 2002, 1:26 PM

Post #10 of 15 (4938 views)

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Re: [Gary sculptari] Salt Lakes In Mexico???

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Great art. You winn a free box of salt! You'll have to wait for summer though, the lake doesn't produce salt in the winter.


Abq

Dec 8, 2002, 1:29 PM

Post #11 of 15 (4933 views)

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Re: [Mereja] Salt Lakes In Mexico???

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I would love to find this out. A salt lake would probably be shallow, even muddy, with salt crusting on the top.


Mereja

Dec 8, 2002, 2:04 PM

Post #12 of 15 (4939 views)

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Re: [Abq] Salt Lakes In Mexico???

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El Lago de Cuitzeo is shallow and muddy. I just asked my husband and he said his father used to talk about salt production from or around the lake. They would take water and let it evaporate and use the white crust left over to wash their hair when they had dandruff. I will try to find out more from my father-in-law when we call down there. This is very interesting. There are carp and charales (minnows) in the lake that they fish for. They use big nets connected to their boats. While one person is in the boat the other walks waste deep in the water pulling the other end of the net around to collect the carp. I have some pictures but I can't figure out how to put them on here so people can see them.


Elaine


Dec 9, 2002, 8:47 AM

Post #13 of 15 (4905 views)

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Re: [Mereja] Salt Lakes In Mexico???

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I had to smile at the "washing of hair" in the salt. My grandmother once had me rub table salt into my hair/scalp and rinse it in vinegar to help me get rid of dandruff when I was just a teenager. It worked! Have used the method several times since when I had any problem.

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When one door closes, another opens. Some people are so busy looking at the door that has closed, they don't see the door that has opened. Keep looking for those open doors.
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jennifer rose

Dec 9, 2002, 5:47 PM

Post #14 of 15 (4884 views)

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Re: [Abq] Salt Lakes In Mexico???

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Araro. It's on the south edge of Lage de Cuitzeo, on the south side of the Morelia-Mexico cuota, just before the Jerahuaro exit.


Mereja

Dec 9, 2002, 7:38 PM

Post #15 of 15 (4875 views)

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Re: [Mereja] Salt Lakes In Mexico???

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I don't know if it is true or not, but I just talked to somebody today who is from Patzcuaro who said the only salt he knows of that they take from Cuitzeo is for animal.
 
 
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