British Baking Ingredients in Los Angeles

I got a copy of the British version of Sweet by Yotam Ottolenghi and Helen Goh. Sadly, Surfas, where I would have found everything I need, closed. Does anyone know where in Los Angeles, even better if it’s Westside, to buy (at reasonable prices) the following:

European Self-Raising flour
Light Muscovado Sugar
Stem Ginger
Mixed Spice
Jumbo Rolled Oats
Demerara Sugar
Double Cream (It’s easy to find, but only at ridiculous prices.)

If you’re looking for all of that, and will be using those ingredients on a somewhat regular basis, I would suggest investing in an Amazon Prime account.

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I’ve checked Amazon. Most of the British baking ingredients are sold by outside sellers. The shipping costs often vastly exceed the price of the product.

Then perhaps Sur La Table?

Here is a link to the baking ingredients on their website. The only British baking ingredients they carry are caster sugar and demerara sugar, both at obscenely high prices.

In case anyone plans to recommend King Arthur Flour; I’ve checked. They don’t carry British baking ingredients.

Double cream and Demerara can be found at whole foods. Jumbo rolled oats seems to be what is called ‘old fashioned oats’ here in the US. Mixed spice looks easy enough to mix up a batch if you have baking spices on hand or use pumpkin spice and call it a day. You might try bay cities for the flour since the always surprise me on what they carry but you may want to check what the US substitution was in the book. Stem ginger = just make your own it won’t get cheaper than that.

Thanks for the info. I’ll check out Whole Paycheck for double cream and Demerara sugar.

I found double cream at World Market. It cost $7.99 for 5.6 ounces/160 grams. With so many of the recipes on Sweet calling for so much double cream, I could go broke. If I can’t find a better price I will substitute manufacturing cream which I can get at Smart & Final.

I had the same thought about Bay Cities so I made a trip to check. All right, it was an excuse to buy one of their delicious tuna sandwiches. They do have quite a wonderful selection of specialty foods, but alas no European self-raising flour. I resorted to ordering it from Amazon despite the frightening shipping cost.

Thank you very much for the stem ginger recipe.

In case anyone here wants to check out some of the recipes in Sweet, here’s a link to a column in The Guardian that has ten of them:

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There’s a store here in Torrance that sells British foods called The British Connection. I’m not sure if they have what you need, but perhaps you can give them a call.

The British Connection
4413 Torrance Blvd
Torrance, CA 90503
(310) 214-1790

Hi, thanks for the recommendation. I called them. They sell self-raising flour, but only during the holidays. Also, at a much higher price than online. They seem to specialize in snack food and candy, not baking ingredients.

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Is that different from the variety of self raising flower that we have available here? It’s just flour mixed with a leavener. Can’t imagine it would be anything particularly unique.

American self-rising flour has less baking powder than European self-raising flour. Also, American self-rising flour has salt added to it. European self-raising flour doesn’t have salt added. I’ve read that in a pinch you can mix baking powder into all purpose flour to approximate European self-raising flour, but that as it can’t be mixed in as thoroughly by hand the baked goods won’t be the same.

There’s a place called Sainsbury Market on Wilshire near Bundy. (310) 826-4388 (from the internet). It’s small and I think more of a convenience store (I only went in once several yrs ago), but perhaps they might know where you can procure some of the stuff you’re looking for?

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aah i see… i have an english friend who always looked for english kind of rising flour as well… i would think that any baker would weigh out their own proportions with flour and baking soda… soda gets old

I bake pretty much every day so baking powder getting old isn’t a problem for me.

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Then i’m doubly surprised you’re not willing to weigh out your own dry mix

European self-raising flour not only has baking powder mixed in more evenly than a home cook could acheive; it is a low protein flour. I have several friends who prefer to not purchase the correct ingredients for a recipe. Almost without exception, they are disappointed with the results. The creator of the recipe used the ingredients and proportions that will yield the best results.

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If I were baking everyday (and baking the same thing everyday), I’d actually find it a big PITA to weigh out dry ingredients if there’s a commercial product that already has the correct proportion of the ingredients. JMO.


Makes sense. My Londonese friend kept claiming there’s a big difference and I never understood why.

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