On the shelf
Himalayan pink salt was - for a while - the sel du jour for foodies. It's a pretty colour and sounds exotic. Now we discover it doesn't actually come from the Himalayas - it's mined in Pakistan. Still, the salt fetches high prices at most shops. We found a version imported from Japan that's much cheaper: Himaraya Rock Salt is only HK$60 for 250 grams. The crystals are quite large, so I put them in a clear salt grinder that not only shows off the colour but also crushes them so the salt seasons foods more evenly. It's sold at TFH Super (shop B, Tung Lam Mansion, 43 Third Street, Sai Ying Pun, tel: 2548 5333).
I'm on a quest to find (or learn to make) Turkish delight as good as some I've bought in Istanbul - I still dream of a rose, pomegranate and pistachio version I found in a tiny shop near the Eminonu district. For now, I'm satisfied with Hazer Baba rose Turkish delight. It sells at City'super (Times Square, Causeway Bay, tel: 2506 2888) for HK$35 for 125 grams.
I bought this Silver Spoon jam sugar after being frustrated with a few of my home-made jams refusing to thicken, even after cooking them for ages. A quick glance at the ingredients showed me that except for humectant (which absorbs moisture), it contained products I would normally use: sugar, apple pectin and citric acid. But when I finally decided to use it I looked at the instructions: it called for 800 grams of fruit and 1kg (the whole bag) of jam sugar! That would make the jam far too sweet. I realised it's cheaper to make my own jam sugar by combining regular granulated sugar with powdered apple pectin. The Silver Spoon jam sugar costs HK$35 for 1kg and is sold at Great in Pacific Place, Admiralty (tel: 2918 9986).