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Jun 2, 2009 10:52 AM

Where to buy Thai ingredients?:North GTA -Markham/Aurora

Can anyone recommend a reliable place- preferably north of Toronto, from Markham to Aurora. that sells ingredients for Thai cooking. Or I work downtown-somewhere downtown near Yonge and Dundas will work. I'm sure you are thinking Markham?, Chinatown,? but I can't seem to locate the stuff when I need it.

I'm sure some savvy reader can direct me to a reliable grocer that sells thai ingredients such as:

- galangal, (have never found it- after numerous tries)
- kaffir leaves, (T+T went to the back and sold me some lime leaves, but not sure if they were "kaffir"- I used them anyway)
-lemongrass: have better luck with this one, but only after trying a few places each time I need it.

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  1. I have never not seen any of those ingredients at any of the stores in Chinatown, and when I lived in Toronto, I bought them very frequently. Perhaps you're just not recognizing galangal when you see it? As for lime leaves, I'm quite sure that the ones you buy are generally keffir.

    Most major chain grocery stories seem to even carry lemongrass these days.

    1. It is very easy to pick them up at Dundas & Spadina area.

      3 Replies
      1. re: Thaithechef

        Thanks for the tips. Ok I will trek over to chinatown and try my luck.

        And, you are right, I do not know what galangal looks like so I wouldn't recognize it-I'm told it looks like ginger. When I ask for it in Asian grocers, the language barrier is an issue - they do not understand what I am asking for- that goes for the larger places, T+T at Warden and Steeles, Big ?? ( something) at Kennedy S of 407 . ( I figure if T+T the Loblaws of asian markets doesn't have it, what are my chances? :).

        I might take an asian friend with me to increase my chance at success.

        1. re: babinni

          It looks *like* ginger, yes, but significantly different, and there are many tubers with which you could get easily confused, such as lesser ginger (krachai). Galangal is white / lightly tinged pink with a much more waxy appearance than ginger. I highly suggest google image searching before heading out to save yourself the pain of having to try to find it based solely on verbal descriptions. You'll be able to identify it right away.

        2. You can find all easily at T&T on a weekend. I believe they stock these items only on the weekend so you might not found them on the weekday. Otherwise, Ho Ging @ Bayview / Hwy 7 stocks all of these items if you go on the weekend. Good luck!

          1 Reply
          1. re: tyatt

            Oh..thanks tyatt. I didn't know weekends were an issue - I was there most recently on a weekday. (but Even if they were out of stock, they still didn't know what I was asking for..I hope it is marked galangal... LOL).
            I will look up Ho Gings address. - that is pretty close by. Very grateful.

          2. It's out of your area, but if you are willing to drive, Top Food Supermarket at Evans & the 427 is an Asian supermarket with a very large selection of ingredients. It's fabulous. They are open 9-9, I believe.