It all started after M tasted some of the naturally sparkling Saratoga Springs mineral water and mentioned how salty it tastes. I boiled down some of the sulphury water to try and make salt. The long story is here. When the water first started boiling, a lot of calcium sank to the bottom, which I strained out. Luckily the sulfur smell went away as it boiled. The water tasted saltier and saltier as it reduced.
I boiled the water all the way down until nothing was left except a salty paste.
I suspect that the remaining 'salt' is half salt and half calcium judging by the taste and texture, but perfectly usable as a seasoning. A lot of the excess calcium probably could have been removed by straining later in the process. Here is the process, with the final product at the end:
Weird, I just noticed that calcium carbonate is a salt, too. I guess I have some learning to do about what exactly is a salt?
This got me thinking - what's the worst place you could make salt from? How about Coney Island sea water? Well, the folks from Urban Sproule tried it and are now in business making local NYC sea salt:
"At first, said Gallagher, they wanted to make salt from each of the five boroughs. “But we tried with Coney Island salt and it was just gray and gross,” chimed in Sproule. Eventually, using their Greenmarket connections, Glenn Bickleman and Charlie Corriss of American Seafood, agreed to fill five-gallon buckets with ocean water drawn 30 miles off the Montauk coast. “I want my salt,” says Gallagher, “to come from where my fish comes from.”"