Budget Menu & Dirt Cheap Recipes F.A.Q Ingredients not found in South Africa

This topic contains 10 replies, has 7 voices, and was last updated by LisaN May 7, 2014 at 7:34 am.

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  • #314223

    I have been going through the recipes and there are quite a few ingredients that I’ve never come across before. I think there are just a lot of things that aren’t available in South Africa:

    • dry minced onion – i’ve only ever seen powder and flakes. will these work just as well?
    • instant flour – is this the same as self-raising flour?
    • instant rice? i’m so jealous!

    battery dying so i’ll post this as is but will add to the list above shortly.

  • #436632

    Liss
    Keymaster

    @gillespieza 267745 wrote:

    I have been going through the recipes and there are quite a few ingredients that I’ve never come across before. I think there are just a lot of things that aren’t available in South Africa:

    • Dry minced onion – I’ve only ever seen powder and flakes. Will these work just as well?
    • Instant flour – is this the same as self-raising flour?
    • Instant rice? I’m so jealous!

    Battery dying so I’ll post this as is but will add to the list above shortly.

    Dry Minced onion = Dry Onion Flakes- that’s what it looks like, sometimes a little finer, depends on the brand or whether you make your own.

    Instant Flour- no, this isn’t the same as self rising flour (which contains leavening agents). Instant flour is a type of flour that dissolves very quickly in either hot Or cold water and is wonderful for Lump free sauces, gravies, stews, etc. You Can you regular all purpose flour in place of instant flour if you’d like, it just doesn’t dissolve as nicely.

    Instant Rice– not worth the hype, except for use in Mug Mixes. It’s rice that’s been parboiled and precooked and then dehydrated again so that it cooks in under 5 minutes. It really doesn’t have much nutritional value, but it’s good in a pinch.

  • #436645

    Instant flour is also known as granular flour. As Liss said it is used for lump free sauces but, it is also used in baking.
    You can just use all purpose flour as a substitute for Instant flour, however, instant flour is a low- Protein flour so (for baking) it would be closer to substitute cake or pastry flour than all purpose. Tip: In a recipe calling for Instant Flour you will need to add 2 level Tablespoons of regular flour per cup called for in a recipe.

    Alternately, if using Instant flour in a recipe calling for regular flour you need to subtract 2 level Tablespoons per cup of flour called for.

    For gravies and sauces I have used this substitute for Instant Flour:

    1 cup all purpose Flour
    1/2 teaspoon Corn Starch

    Whisk the ingredients together well and then sift 3 times to aerate the mixture. If you do not have a sifter, use a sieve to do the same thing. You can make this ahead and store in a air tight container for use as needed.

    Makes equivalent of 1 cup.

    If you were to use this recipe in place of instant flour in a baking recipe you would need to subtract 3 tablespoons per cup of the mix to get an equal weight measure to instant flour.

    Hope this helps. Thanks; Virginia

  • #436662

    Thanks, Liss and Virginia!

    What about this Dawn liquid dish soap that seems to be a staple ingredient in many of the home laundry and other detergent recipes? We don’t have that brand and I’m wondering what makes Dawn so special (and whether I can substitute a local brand).

  • #436664

    @gillespieza 267920 wrote:

    What about this Dawn liquid dish soap that seems to be a staple ingredient in many of the home laundry and other detergent recipes? We don’t have that brand and I’m wondering what makes Dawn so special (and whether I can substitute a local brand).

    i meant to also say the “best”/most popular dish soap here is sunlight lemon liquid dish soap – a unilever/lever brothers product which i believe is available worldwide…. ingredients are sds, sls, anionic surfactants, etc

  • #436665

    FreebieQueen
    Moderator

    @gillespieza 267920 wrote:

    Thanks, Liss and Virginia!

    What about this Dawn liquid dish soap that seems to be a staple ingredient in many of the home laundry and other detergent recipes? We don’t have that brand and I’m wondering what makes Dawn so special (and whether I can substitute a local brand).

    Hmm.. that’s a tough one, there really isn’t a known substitute for dawn. It’s used to clean wildlife during oil spills, used in multiple recipes and I’ve yet to find anything at all that works nearly as well.

    Maybe you could get it on Amazon?

    Amazon Link for Dawn

  • #436657

    @freebiequeen 267926 wrote:

    Maybe you could get it on Amazon?

    Amazon Link for Dawn

    with shipping and the exchange rate, that would cost almost a week’s worth of groceries…. is it good enough to justify that?

    well, i suppose the only way is to try my local brand (sunlight liquid) and see if it works out 🙂 i’ll post a new thread with yay or nay

  • #436692

    FreebieQueen
    Moderator

    @gillespieza 267928 wrote:

    With shipping and the exchange rate, that would cost almost a week’s worth of groceries…. Is it good enough to justify that?

    Um.. NO lol.

    Well, I suppose the only way is to try my local brand (Sunlight Liquid) and see if it works out 🙂 I’ll post a new thread with yay or nay

    That sounds like a good plan. Who knows, you might have discovered the best cleaner in the world . . . .

  • #436738

    Well, here goes my first experiment – the Laundry Sauce.

    Fels Naptha isn’t available here, so I’ve substituted MAQ laundry bar. Also, seems like Borax isn’t very popular here either – I went to 3 different supermarkets and eventually I found 1 tiny 100-gram bottle (that’s about 3.5 oz, or just less than half a cup), for the equivalent of just over $1 (or about the cost of a loaf of fancy seed bread, or a quart of milk, for some context – straight currency conversion never gives a real picture). And a small tub of washing soda (500-gram, or 18 oz, or just about 2 and a quarter cups), for the equivalent of about $3.

    I’m going to try out a small batch, see how it works and I’ll post a new thread regarding the substitutes.

    I’m thinking the borax might just be the snag here – with it being so pricey for such a small amount (about $2.40 per cup), it might not be worth the trouble. I will phone around various industrial/commercial cleaning companies, and try some of the factory outlets and see if I can find a larger amount of borax for a decent price. Although the washing soda isn’t all that much better at about $1.40 per cup 🙁

    My current “commercially bought” laundry detergent is a concentrated powder that costs about $10 for an (advertised) 120 loads, so I might make out slightly better off, but not if I have to drive around any great distances looking for the darned borax — I’ll eat up any savings in petrol 🙂

  • #450925

    Hi GillespieZA I also live in SA (Limpopo) and finding Borax or washing soda is a nightmare! The best and cheapest option was buying it online from a company called The Soap Barnin Edenvale
    www.soapbarn.co.za
    Borax costs only R12.95 for 500gr and washing soda costs R19.95 for 500gr and their postage is very reasonable.

  • #450969

    The Dawn liquid has an ingredient that breaks down grease and oil. Perhaps you have a comparable one in South Africa. Maybe you can call a wildlife rehab and ask them what they would use for an oil soaked bird?

    Not sure how much it would cost to ship a bottle but there is a variety now that is “concentrated” so that might be your best bet for shipping.

  • #453423

    Hi gillespieZA, did you have any luck with using Sunlight Liquid? I am also searching for Dawn.

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Budget Menu & Dirt Cheap Recipes F.A.Q Ingredients not found in South Africa