You can sit beside my salt cellar!

Portugese Provence Hand Painted Salt Keeper from Williams-Sonoma

For my birthday this year, the hubby and dear son asked what I would like in terms of a gift.  I could only think of one thing that I really had been wanting: a salt box, also known as a salt cellar, salt vessel or salt pig.   I had come across several different salt boxes, vessels and was amazed at the different varieties of materials in which they were constructed from!!  Glass, metal, porcelain, clay and beautiful selections of differing woods.  So many to choose from.  I was so excited when I received this lovely hand-painted earthenware and mahogany salt vessel from the boys.  You’ve never seen a girl hoot and holler like I did!   It’s perfect for the cabin and I love the ability to control the dispensed salt portions when cooking…much better than a shaker!!

For those of you who are interested, here is a little history on salt and its variety of keepers:   During the Middle Ages, salt was a valuable commodity.  It would be kept on the table in elaborate metal or glass dishes as a status symbol.  Being granted the favor of sharing the salt cellar of the host was seen as a sign of great respect.  The social status of a guest was often measured simply by judging the distance at which the person sat from the master’s large salt cellar placed near the middle of a long table.  The phrases above the salt and below the salt alluded to the former custom of seating persons of higher rank above and those of lower rank below that container.   

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