Salt - Why Bother?
Why is it that salt is deemed an essential ingredient in bread making? When I first started making bread I stuck faithfully to the recipes given, chucking in the requisite amount of salt. But more recently, I have ditched the salt and to be absolutely honest, I can see no real difference in the quality of the loaf that comes out of the oven at the end of baking. By quality I mean in taste but also in the substance/texture of the bread.
For sure I have mixed results with my bread (eg. occasional problems with rising, or comes out with poor texture etc), but this is no worse now than it was while I was using salt, just a result of my ineptitude.
One thing I often do, is leave the dough to rise and prove for long periods, especially if I am forced to, like if it is a bit cool - I have even left it to rise in the fridge for a day or so, so that might have helped the flavour develop. But at the moment, it is really warm, and it all seems to be ready to bake off in a flash, and it still comes out really good.
So why is salt so important? What am I missing? Can anyone convince me that I need to use it again since I seem to have reasonable success without it?
Interested to hear your thoughts.