Sourcing Pastry Ingredients

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Producing French cakes and pastries often requires sourcing hard-to-find ingredients. For the home baker, this is a common problem since food wholesalers/distributors typically sell ingredients in bulk and are unwilling to repackage their products to sell smaller quantities to the general public.

Since coming to Singapore, I have been pleasantly surprised to find several retail stores that offer a fine selection of professional level pastry ingredients in small quantities. For example, I’ve been able to find praline paste, paillete feuilletine, Valrhona and Michel Cluizel chocolates, Tahitian vanilla beans, Eurovanille products, Fabbri flavoring products, Sicilian pistachios, and AOC Echiré butter. Certainly having these ingredients available does extend my creativity further when conceptualising new recipes and even testing out recipes from my favorite pastry books.

An interesting American online business called L’Epicerie is a concept that I can only hope for here in Singapore or Malaysia. They sell professional quality ingredients in smaller quantities for home cooks and bakers. L’Epicerie carries ingredients that I have always wanted but have never been able to find in retail outlets. For example, products such as trimoline, atomized glucose, dextrose, Cremodan 30 ice cream stabilizer, and Mandelin “fine” almond flour (for making macarons!) are all available on their online shop.

Overall, I am happy with the French pastry scene here in Singapore and am glad to see quality ingredients, which were previously only available to professional pastry chefs, now available to the baking enthusiast at home.

Here are some of my favorite places in Singapore to shop for pastry ingredients:

Sun Lik Trading Pte Ltd
33 Seah Street Singapore 188389
Tel : +65 6338 0980
Fax : +65 6339 2685
(Valrhona chocolates, Felchlin Praline Paste, Paillete Feuilletine, Tahitian vanilla beans)

Culina Quality Food & Beverage
Tanglin Village
8 Dempsey Road #01-13
Singapore
Tel: +65 6474 7338
Fax +65 6476 4388
(AOC Echiré Butter, Sicilian Pistachios, Fabbri Flavoring products, Eurovanille products, Michel Cluizel Chocolates)
http://www.culina.com.sg/

Phoon Huat & Co (Pte) Ltd
Various locations across Singapore
(Apple Pectin, Ravifruit fruit pureés, Bourbon vanilla beans, general baking ingredients)
http://www.phoonhuat.com

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4 Responses to “Sourcing Pastry Ingredients”

  1. eyevee Says:

    sun lik service very rude, although they have many things, am thinking of giving up going to this place.

  2. Evan Says:

    hi there, i just discovered your blog and i’m hooked on every entry! its a pity you don’t blog anymore 😦 i’m a home baker and i enjoy making entremets and french/japanese cakes and desserts. so far i’ve tried a few pierre herme’s recipes like ispahan, plaisir sucre & the infiniment vanille tart. i’ve also just made sahadaru aoki’s valencia and will be putting up the entry soon.

    like what you said, i realized making entremets is pretty easy and i’m not really intimidated by the lengthy recipes and multi components. what i’m lacking is perhaps in techniques. i wish to learn more about techniques and i just read about using a star-shaped nozzle to pipe the pate a choux in yr blog and i intend to try it soon. i really like the thin longish type like they sell in fauchon and sadaharu aoki, they’re so elegant!

    i hope you’ll see this comment and i thank you for posting so many recipes, tips and valuable info on professional pastry making. i really need them! and i wish you’ll consider blogging again!

    p/s : i’m from singapore, and i noticed you didn’t mention about euraco. i personally likeir range of products and hv so far bought sevarome’s pistachio paste, sabaton’s chestnut puree, valrhona chocs, cocoa nibs, boiron purees & elle & vire whipping cream. they don’t hv a min. purchase amt so its good, except i think people in the biz will get a special supplier price. not a problem for me since i don’t mind paying a little bit more to get what i need 🙂

    • stickofachef Says:

      Hi Evan,

      Thanks so much for your kind words. I’m glad you were able to pick up a few tips from my blog entries. My blog was very much designed to benefit enthusiastic bakers like yourself!

      I’ve had a look at your blog as well and you have very pretty pictures and your cakes and pastries do look elegant and scrumptious. I must admit that one of the weaknesses of my blog is my weak photography. However, I try to make up for this deficiency by providing useful content to my readers.

      Although I have stopped blogging, I still do respond to comments that are posted to me in my blog. I’m always available to dispense advice. I can’t guarantee I can answer all queries but I’ll certainly try my best to give the best answers to any questions posed to me.

      Good luck in your next project to pipe pate a choux with a star shaped piping tip. I’m sure you’ll be happy with the results as much as you enjoy eating your creations.

      Actually, I do like Euraco’s products a lot. However, I only know them as wholesale suppliers to businesses. I was not aware they sold to the general public. Do you purchase their products directly from their distribution centre at Henderson Industrial Park. Also, my problem is that purchasing directly from Euraco means that I must purchase the items in quantities that are too much for me since I only bake on an occasional basis. Since you have your own home business (which I’m sure is successful), you can probably justify buying 1 kg of Sevarome’s (very expensive!) pistachio paste (which, by the way, I would LOVE to use in my cakes and pastries). For me, I mainly purchase my baking ingredients from Sun Lik Trading on Seah St. At Sun Lik, I can get small quantities of Valrhona’s chocolate products, great quality paillete feuilletine, praline paste, almond paste, tahitian vanilla beans, and so much more. For certain basic ingredients, I will also go to Phoon Huat on Bencoolen St.

      Thanks again for dropping by. One of the perks of blogging is that I get to meet so many talented home bakers, like yourself, who are as enthusiastic about French pastry making as I am.

      I look forward to seeing your entry on Sadhu’s Valencia cake soon! 🙂

      Cheers!

  3. Evan Says:

    hello 🙂 i’m so glad to receive yr reply!

    thx for yr kind compliments, i still hv lots to improve on when it comes to photography and baking and pls don’t worry about not having much photos on yr blog. the insightful information and yr willingness to share is really more than sufficient. and i’m glad you’ll be around to help.

    yes yes, i’ll update u about the pate a choux after i’ve done it 🙂

    as for euraco, i didn’t hv to buy in bulk for those things i purchase. yea i get them from the warehouse at henderson but if you purchase above $200, they’ll deliver free to yr doorstep. i agree with u abt how expensive the sevarome’s pastes are. i shared with my friend for the pistachio one and i really like it alot! its even good enough to eat it straight from the tub though the alcohol is really quite strong.

    i drop by sunlik pretty often too but they don’t hv alot of things. i didn’t realize they sell tahitian vanilla beans! should hv taken a look there when i made the pierre herme’s tart 😦 did u know that phoon huat has been bringing quite alot of new stuff lately? they brought in quite a good range of nielsen massey’s products like vanilla extract & bean paste, rosewater, coffee/almond/orange extracts and they’re so much cheaper compared to places like shermay.

    also, i’ve blogged abt the valencia :

    http://bossacafez.blogspot.com/2010/09/sadaharu-aokis-valencia.html

    i hv a few questions to ask you, hope you’ll be able to advise. i realize whenever i make sliced rectangular entremets like this, i’m almost never able to get clean even slices. sometimes they’ll get all wobbly after slicing and they’ll be like slanting. i tried freezing it before i slice and they’re alot easier to cut (provided the whole entremet is consistent in texture) but for this valencia, the feuilletine layer is rather hard after freezing so i had a hard time cutting through. i let it thaw further but by the time i’m able to cut through the feuilletine, the mousse is almost melting! how do i strike a balance here? also, i like the fact that good entremets are low in height so i try not to let each component exceed 1cm in height. i find it easier for sponges and dacquoises coz you’re able to slice them to the desired height. but when it comes to mousses & gelees, its hard to gauge how much you’ve poured into the ring since some recipes actually make more than what is required so you cant just pour everything in. is it possible to make a marking somewhere? i’ve tried making each component separately but when i assemble them, the mousse/gelee just wouldn’t “fasten” onto the cake. ended up when i slice the cake, the layers came off lol. would appreciate yr advise, thx in advance 🙂

    haha i’m definitely not talented and i still hv so many doubts and questions when it comes to french patisserie. i hv many baker friends but they can’t answer my questions coz they’re just normal homebakers who’ve never dabbled in french patisserie before 😦

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