The ancient Romans began the salt pans of Marsalforn over 2,000 years ago, and the process is still being done to this day. Sea salt is coarser than refined salt and is a staple in Mediterranean gastronomic traditions. Ironically, it is not considered to be as salty-tasting as its refined or iodized counterparts.
If there is one thing the Maltese do have, it’s an endless supply of sea salt, but it does not end up in your salt shaker by accident. Salt panning involves carving shallow niches into rock by the sea and pumping them regularly with seawater. The stagnant seawater is then left to evaporate in the sun. What gets left behind is the final product- rock salt. It is a natural process that yields a versatile cooking ingredient. The Marsalforn salt pans are a fascinating display of ancient ingenuity still being used today.