SAN FELIPE. BAJA CALIFORNIA. MX
Fifty miles south of the US California – Arizona border is one of the youngest seas on the planet. A rich and abundant body of water virtually untouched by people or industry. Ten million years in the making, the Sea of Cortes is clear as crystal, warm as a bath and naturally pure.
Located on the shore of the Sea of Cortez is the village of San Felipe. A typical little ol’ Mexican fishing village in the state of Baja California, Mexico. It is 125 miles south of the United States border crossing at Calexico, California, and it is a distant, outlying “delegation” of the municipality of Mexicali.
The “Malacon”, or the “downtown ocean front”, of San Felipe is the4 focal point of the village. The shape of Gulf of California acts like a really big funnel which leads to HUGE tides. During periods of full moon, the low tide can go out as much as three quarters of a mile. The difference in height of the sea between high and low tide can be as much as 24 feet. These extreme tides help keep the waters fresh by constantly refreshing the waters of the Sea of Cortez.
The economy of San Felipe is based on fishing, tourism and catering to U.S. and Mexican travelers. The Mexican federal government has just completed improving the highway access. San Felipe even boasts a full service international airport capable of handling most twin engine commercial jets.
The pristine waters of the Sea of Cortes provides the best of waters for sailing, rowing, paddle boarding, jet skiing and various other water sports. In fact, the international award winning Mexican National Rowing Team is located in San Felipe and plies the water almost every early morning and afternoon when the bay is smooth as glass. In the summer the water temp can be as much as 90 degrees – just like a bathtub.
San Felipe is host to many well-known popular events such as our Annual Shrimp Festival which is held the first weekend of November http://www.sanfelipeshrimpfestival.com. The Clam and Ceviche Festivals celebrate the riches of the Sea of Cortes. In December, a soon to be favorite, Tamale Festival is just in time for the holiday celebrations.
San Felipe has become a popular “foodie” destination. “Baja Med” style of cooking was partially birth in San Felipe. Valley of Guadalupe wine and olive oil, combined with the flavorful San Felipe Sea Salt is a style where chefs can cook with an abundance of fresh, local foods and organic vegetables.
San Felipe has recently been added to the Annual Baja Culinary Fest which is held every October. Chefs from all over Baja travel from community to community to show off their skills and the flavorful uses of our local foods.
In 2008, the San Felipe Salt Company was founded to harvest and market the natural salt produced from the rich, clean waters of the Sea of Cortes. Our natural, solar dried, sea salt is produced in the most environmentally friendly way – the sea provides the water and Mother Nature provides the sun and wind to create the salt. No carbon footprint.
San Felipe Salt Company provides you with a flavorful, naturally lower in sodium and higher in essential trace minerals. The natural, essential minerals bring a whole new dimension to your food. And for margaritas – you can’t beat the flavor enhancement San Felipe Salt adds to the rim of the glass. No chemicals or anti-caking agents are added.
Kosher Certification: We have certified Kosher by “Earth Kosher”, a kosher certifying service specializing in Natural Food products.
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Rabbi Zecharyah Goldman, Rabbinic Administrator
HOW IS THE SALT PROCESSED??
World famous San Felipe Natural Sea Salt is produced in an area called the Oletepec Estuary in Baja California. The Estuary is within the “Reserva de la Biosfera del Alto golfo de California y Delta del Río Colorado” an important biological reserve. http://www.oceanoasis.org/conservation/study1.html.
The Sea of Cortez has been in the making for the past 7 to 10 million years. It is relatively young, clean and undeveloped. As the Colorado River formed the Grand Canyon in the US States of Colorado, Utah, Arizona, Nevada and California immense amounts of sand was deposited in the river delta area, the Northern end of the Sea of Cortez. The Oletepec estuary was formed by the flow of the river, the strong tides and the sands from the Colorado River.
The Estuary is of such a natural design that at the times of a full moon, when the tides are at the highest, the estuary will flood with sea water from the Sea of Cortez. As the moon wanes and the water recedes the flood water is trapped in the estuary. Because of the heat and the dry desert winds of the Baja the water, H2O, begins to evaporate making the remaining sea water more concentrated or dense and heavier. The heavy, concentrated water soaks into the sands below creating an underground basin of highly concentrated sea water. Sea water in its natural state contains approximately 3.5% salt. The concentrated sea water in the underground basin is approximately 20% salt.
Think of the process as if you were making a “reduction” of a wine sauce in the kitchen. If you heat wine in a pot, the moisture – water – is driven off and the wine becomes concentrated and heavier.
The salina has a well (pozo) where the concentrated water is pumped into a concentration pond where the water is allowed to evaporate even more. In this pond, minerals such as gypsum (jesso) and iron oxide will naturally fall out of the sea water solution.
When the concentrated sea water reaches a level of concentrate of 25% the water is moved into the final evaporation ponds or crystallizer ponds. The Baja heat and winds evaporate the remaining H2O and salt is formed. The sodium chloride forms at a concentration of 26% and other minerals form at a concentration of 30% to 32%. It is these other minerals, magnesium, potassium, calcium and many of the other micro-nutrients found in sea water that give San Felipe Salt its unique flavor. Sea water actually contains 90 minerals. Most all of the minerals can be found in San Felipe Salt to some degree.
Salt companies like “La Fina” and “Morton …when it rains it pours….” wash the salt to make it sparkling clean and white. The result is pure sodium chloride without any naturally balancing minerals. In fact, it is an international regulation that in order to call a product “table salt”, it must be a minimum of 97% sodium chloride. The stuff your doctor suggests to reduce your intake of.
Health conscious people are learning that natural sea salt – as Mother Nature intended it to be – contains many naturally occurring minerals that are depleted in modern diets and washed out from refined salts. Those sparkling clean “table salts”.
Professional Chefs are finding that the natural minerals in natural sea salt bring a new dimension to flavors that refined table salt doesn’t.