Đường Phèn, Rock Sugar, Rock Candy

Đường Thẻ, Chinese Brown Sugar, Bar Sugar

Đường Thốt Nốt, Toddy Palm Sugar

Đường Mặch Nha, Maltose

Extracts, Flavorings and Essences:

Vani, Bột Thơm, Bột Thơm Hoa Lan, Vanilla Powder, Vanilla Bean, Vanilla Extract

Mùi Lá Dứa, Pandan Extract

Nước Hoa Bưởi, Mali Flower Extract

Dầu Hạnh Nhân, Almond Extract

Coffee Extract

Various Extracts


Bột Khai, Baking Ammonia, Ammonia Bicarbonate

Bột Nổi Nâu, Bột Nổi Bánh Mì, Men Bánh Mì, Yeast

Single Acting Baking Powder

Double Acting Baking Powder

Phèn, Alum

Cream of Tartar

Thuốc Tiêu Mặn, Thuốc Muối, Bột Soda, Bicarbonate of Soda, Baking Soda

Men Cơm Rượu, Vietnamese/Chinese Wine Yeast


Bột Gạo, Rice Flour

Bột Nếp, Glutinous Rice Flour

Bột Tàn Mì, Wheat Starch

Tapioca Starch

Bột Bánh Dẻo, Koh Fun, Roasted Glutinous Rice Flour (Notice the English is Different but the Chinese is the Same)

Bột Bắp, Corn Starch/Flour

Fats and Oils:

Nước Mở Thắng, Lard

Mở Trừu, Shortening

Other Must Haves:
Bột Bán, Tapioca Pearls

Nước Cốt Dừa, Coconut Milk/Cream

Rau Câu, Agar Agar (Powdered and "Whole")

Custard Powder

Comments (41)

On 7:23 PM , Anonymous said...

Hi tt. Wow...I should have look at this section before I went to buy all those ingredients. I bought the alsa baking powder but it didn't say single acting so I went and bought another baking powder and then finally make my own...but this is helpful. Can you post the scale? I really don't know which one is the right one, didn't want to buy such an expensive scale. Thanks.

On 12:40 AM , hoangtam/tt said...

all scales are pretty much the same. The one I use cost around 5 dollars and it works just fine. Just remember to look for one in metric (grams) and don't buy one that measures by kilos, because most recipes are measure in grams (smaller units) rather than kilos.

On 1:00 PM , Anonymous said...

Which one is the bread flour? How does the packaging looks like? Thanks

On 1:38 PM , hoangtam/tt said...

None, I didn't post bread flour so there is no picture. For bread flour all you have to do is just go to a grocery store and look for the bag of flour that says "bread flour".

On 6:10 AM , Anonymous said...

I wanted to buy the "koh fun". Which one is the correct version to buy or which brand??? I live in Tennessee and I don't read chinese. TQ

On 1:35 PM , hoangtam/tt said...

they're both the same brand. If you don't read chinese than print out a picture and take it to the store with you and "compare" the chinese characters on the picture with the characters on package.

I'm not from TN, so have no idea if you can buy koh fun over there. I can send you some if you like.

On 1:12 AM , yochana said...


I'll be going to Ho Chi Minh next month. Can you recommend me a good shop where I can buy all the cake ingredients like baking powder, pau floor, etc.

Thanks and hope to hear from you soon.

On 7:47 PM , hoangtam/tt said...

I don't live in Saigon and never did so I have no idea where to direct you. However, you should be able to buy baking powder anywhere in the world. As for pau flour, just substitute with cake flour.

On 11:38 AM , Anonymous said...

hi hoangtam/tt,
Please help me... I've seen a lot of recipes calling for castor sugar. Is it the same as powdered sugar or confection sugar?

On 12:43 AM , hoangtam/tt said...

castro sugar is not the same as powdered sugar. Castro sugar aka baker's sugar is like table sugar only finer in texture (but not powdery). Because its texture is finer, it dissolves more easily.

On 1:42 AM , Anonymous said...

Hello Hoangtam,
I looked at your Baking Essentials, and wish to inform you about one of the item you posted. I checked out Ammonia Bicarbonate as a leavening agent, it was used and still used by some industries but not for food. I read that it was used before Baking Soda was available. Also it is a irrritant to the skin, eyes and respiratory system. Why do you include this on this page instead of Baking Soda, when it is not harmful for use.

On 2:04 AM , hoangtam/tt said...

I use and post ammonia because it works a heck of a lot better than baking soda. Logic should answer your concern. Ammonia is used as a leavened, and it reacts (evaporates) in heat. Thus if ammonia is harmful, there is no ammonia left to harm in the final product (any recipe that contains ammonia will be “cooked” one way or another, else the product will smell too much of ammonia to consume). As for the skin thing….how do you know how much ammonia to put in a recipe? You measure it using a spoon, scale, etc… How will it irritate your skin if you don’t touch it? As for the smell, did you know that most household cleaners contain ammonia? The amount of ammonia in any recipe is way smaller than the amount of ammonia in those cleaners… If ammonia was that harmful than shouldn’t people who use cleaners with ammonia all drop dead by now? After all, they touch it and smell it much more than anyone who uses it in recipes.

On 12:55 AM , Anonymous said...

HI there,

I have a bottle of something that looks similar to the pandan extract you have displayed - I've always thought it was just a green food colouring (pandan-green; there's no english on the label to indicate what it is exactly), and hence have never used it before. At the back it says "aroma pasta pandan" - I have no idea what language that's in, so if you could please help me decipher its meaning, that would be awesome. I'm hoping it's actually pandan extract or something other than just colouring..

PS if it is an extract, would I be able to substitute pandan extract for pandan paste, since they're not available at my local shops, both asian or otherwise?

Thanks :)

On 11:15 AM , hoangtam/tt said...


open the bottle and smell what's inside. If it's pandan paste then it should smell like pandan, if it's just coloring than it's shouldn't smell like anything at all.

aroma pasta pandan:
aroma = fragrance
pasta = paste
pandan = pandan
thus, aroma pasta pandan = pandan fragrance paste (pandan paste)

Pandan paste is the same as pandan extract. The only difference is extracts is the color, extracts usually don't have any color in them.

On 7:36 PM , Anonymous said...

cool! thanks for the reply. I have never used any form of pandan before, so I would not know what it smells like. but i guess if there is some sort of smell, it means it's the real deal, right?

since, as you said, the paste and extract are essentially the same, can they be substituted for one another in the same quantities? I have the impression that the paste would be thicker but less concentrated in flavour....

On 3:51 PM , Anonymous said...

Hi HT.
Do you know "bột trong" is? Thanks

On 9:57 PM , hoangtam/tt said...

no I don't but I'm guessing it's probably bot nang or bot dau xanh loc

On 2:29 AM , Anonymous said...

i live in Australia and really love Vietnamese food. Your blog is beautifull.Could you tell me what is the difference between single and doulbe acting baking powder. iam having difficulty of finding the double acting baking powder in Australia. is there any other way to substitute double acting baking powder ?Thanks

On 12:11 PM , hoangtam/tt said...

single acting baking powder = 1 base, 1 acid

double acting baking powder = 2 acids, 1 base

you should use google for more info.

On 4:03 PM , Anonymous said...

hi,can you tell me what is wheach start?i can not find it here,in vanuatu,can anything else instesd othat?what is all purpose flour??i cant made dau chao quay ,because havent gor wheat starch?thanks you

On 3:40 PM , Anonymous said...

TT -

I'm looking for single-acting baking powder to make banh bo nuong (per your recipe ^^). On here, you listed Rumford Baking Powder as a single-acting baking powder. I've gone through all my local stores and was not able to find Alsa, but found Rumford. Unfortunately, all the Rumfords say "double-acting" on the containers. Can I still use this to make banh bo nuong, or is there a single-acting Rumford out there that I can't find? 0_o Thank you in advance for taking your time to answer my question.:)

On 12:13 AM , hoangtam/tt said...


if it says double acting, don't use it or should I say...use at your own risk.

On 8:38 PM , Anonymous said...

Hi Hoangtam
I just found ur blog few days ago, and I love it. There are so many good recipes that I like to try. I love to cook (especially vietnamese food) but I just didn't know where to start. Thanks alot for having ur blog available for anyone who love to cook.
I have a question for u about baking ammonia. I found that you live in Seattle area. Can you tell me where you got that? I try all the Asian store around Tacoma but I just couldn't find it. Thanks

On 4:44 AM , Anonymous said...


Could someone tell me what is cake flour?


On 11:07 PM , Anonymous said...

hi, I want to bake Chinese bun requires Ammonia, but I couldn't find it in Seattle area(Chinatown).
Why did you buy it?
I really want to make it!!
thank you.

On 10:33 PM , Anonymous said...

Hi Hoang Tam,
Thanks For posting all the wonderful recipes,I love your blog. You said that for koh fun, both wheat flour and fried glutinuos rice flour are the same brand but are they the same kind? I can only find wheat flour in the asian markets where I live.


On 11:19 PM , hoangtam/tt said...


I don't quite understand your question.

are you asking if koh fun and wheat flour are the same? No, they're not.

the only brand of koh fun I can find here is "cock brand". However, that brand sometimes label koh fun as wheat starch (as in the picture above). Although the english is sometimes screwed up, the chinese writing for both packages say 'koh fun'.

hope this helps

On 7:02 PM , Anonymous said...

Thank you for your reply HT. So Koh Fun is roasted/fried glutinous flour and not wheat flour, is it the same as Vietnamese "bot banh deo"? I am trying to make Banh dau xanh (Mung Bean Cake).I have a hard time finding the ROASTED glutinous flour even though I live in San Jose, California where there're quite a few Asian markets around. Can I substitute regular glutinous flour (bot nep)instead?


On 7:29 PM , Anonymous said...

Hello Hoang Tam,

Sorry for asking a lot of questions regarding Koh Fun, but if I understand your answer correctly, for the Cock brand even though the two flours, wheat starch and roasted rice flour are written differently in English, they are actually the same one? I just bought a bag of Cock brand wheat starch (The same one as in your picture) Can I use it to make your mung bean cake.In another word is it koh fun?

Hope to hear from you soon.


On 1:51 PM , Anonymous said...

Hoang Tam,
can i subsitute wheat starch with all purpose flour for baking a cake? i am trying to make kuih bahulu but i can't find wheat starch where i live. Thanks.

On 4:52 PM , hoangtam/tt said...

All purpose flour contains gluten and wheat starch doesn't so they're not interchangeable. You can substitute wheat starch with cornstarch, since cornstarch doesn't contain gluten either.

On 9:42 AM , Anonymous said...

thank you!

On 4:45 PM , Unknown said...

Hello! Hoangtam

i want to make dau chao quay, but where i live i can't find wheat starch, can i subtitude with different flour? and which one can i use, thanks and hope to heard from you soon :-)

On 4:52 PM , Unknown said...


i want to make dau chao quay but i cant find wheat starch where i live, can i substitute which different flour and which one should i use thanks.. have a great day

On 1:08 AM , Anonymous said...


Just want to know, what is white limestone paste in Vietnamese?


On 9:20 AM , hoangtam/tt said...


just use all purpose flour


limestone paste is "vôi ăn trầu"

On 11:43 PM , Anonymous said...

Hi, can you tell me where to buy the "hoa buoi extract=pomelo/mali flower extract?" I tried to look for the pomelo extract in chinatown in new york city, but I could not find it. Is there an online store that I can get or a place in new york that sell Pomelo/malie flower extract? Thanks.

On 7:42 PM , Anonymous said...

Hi, it's January 2011 - Happy New Year to you.

I also live in Seattle and searched high and low for Koh Fun. Where do you buy it? Have you seen it recently? Ranch 99 doesn't even know what I am talking about - even speaking and writing Chinese.

On 12:25 PM , Anonymous said...

May I ask what is fried glut. rice flour in VNese? Thanks.

On 5:34 PM , Anonymous said...

I have a package with ten vials of super vanilline powder that I bought at my local Asian grocer. Is this edible? I tasted it and it is awful. ... But smells heavenly. It is vianco brand.

On 11:00 PM , hoangtam/tt said...

What you have is vanillin, it's the chemical in makes vanilla smell like vanilla. It's most likely synthetic. It is edible. When using it keep in mind it is very strong a little will go a long way.