Lots of people I know have a sweet tooth. But not me. Sure, I like desserts. I’m not a freak. But sweets don’t do it for me. You know what does? Salt. I have a serious salty tooth. You know what else? There are tons of other people out in the world just like me, who prefer casseroles over cookies and popcorn over parfaits. We are all salty tooths. Or is it salty teeth? Whatever. Don’t overthink it.
To me, a savory dish is a time machine. It’s a bit of nostalgia while simultaneously being right in the moment. Full of fond memories and forward facing too. It’s ingenuity, tradition, humility, and boldness, all cooked up together and shared with others in a loving, unspoken gesture.
The Original Salty Tooths
I’m lucky to come from a long line of savory specialists and southern home cooks. Both my grandmothers had ‘down home’ dialed in. What I would give to have their macaroni and cheese or cheese grits one more time!
The flavors from my dad’s kitchen are my most favorite- salty, sweet, complex, yet simple- just like he was! Pop as we called him, was a rib and brisket master, among many other specialties. He would carefully tend to a meal hours-long in the making, and the bigger the crowd to feed, the better.
As a single mom moving further out west for work, I clung more and more to the food I remembered at home. It was a way to connect in spite of the distance, and to teach my son about his roots even though we had replanted ourselves a thousand miles away. I know, I know. Nostalgia is trite. But for us, it was a lifeline.
Over the years, I accumulated precious family recipes and added new ones. Ultimately, I needed a place to curate the collection. I imagined that one day my own little foodie, grown up and far away from home, could pull out the recipe for his favorite dish, Bucatini and Meatballs, and feel a bit closer.
And just like my family’s food was always intended, I also wanted to share this collection with others- friends, strangers, and everyone in between. And so, Salty Tooth was born. Anyone who craves a little comfort can find it here.
Whether it harkens back to my Louisiana roots, my formative years in Texas, my current digs in Arizona, or my travels both near and far, savory food takes me to warm and wonderful places without ever having to pack a bag.
So grab your salt cellar. We are going on an adventure.