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Finally, a local source for molecular gastronomy ingredients

TorontoJo Apr 6, 2013 12:26 PM

Inquiries for MG ingredients and equipment pop up from time to time, so I thought I'd share that the local company Powder for Texture is up and running:


They sell their products at Nella Cucina, Nella Mississauga, at Willow Cakes & Pastries (in NOTL) or online.

The owner is John Placko, who some of you may know from his Australia Day dinners or his courses at Humber College. I just took his MG desserts workshop and it was incredibly fun. 3 hours of hands on work on around 15 recipes. It's remarkable how simple many of the techniques are, once you have the right ingredients (even without things like the sous vide machine or the super fancy vacuum sealing machine). It's well worth the price, as you get to use several MG techniques and sample everything you make.

I know there is a savoury version of the workshop next week in Niagara-on-the-Lake. Not sure when the next Toronto-based workshops are, but I imagine you can sign up for announcements.

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  1. j
    jammy RE: TorontoJo Apr 6, 2013 01:35 PM

    That's good to know. I'd love to take one of those workshops.

    Btw, Lentia, in Brampton also carries ingredients and tools, though they sell in large sizes.

    They also sell Valrhona, Callebaut and Cacao Barry chocolate (3kg package is the usual size).

    I found out about them not long ago, but they seem to have been around for a while.

    1 Reply
    1. re: jammy
      TorontoJo RE: jammy Apr 6, 2013 01:43 PM

      It's good to have more options! I do like that Powder for Texture sells in nice small jars, so you're not investing heavily for something that may be just a fun home experiment.

    2. j
      julesrules RE: TorontoJo Apr 6, 2013 05:32 PM

      Sounds like fun, thanks for posting :)

      1. TorontoJo RE: TorontoJo Apr 6, 2013 06:06 PM

        Here's the calendar for future MG workshops for anyone interested:


        1. TorontoJo RE: TorontoJo Apr 9, 2013 05:51 PM

          Meant to post some pics of the MG desserts workshop. Like I said above, a ton of fun.

          1. Black sesame sponge
          2. Blueberry pearls, made with a cold oil technique
          3. Doughnut ice cream ball -- my favourite item of the day!
          4. Eggless (vegan!) honey meringues

          4 Replies
          1. re: TorontoJo
            cynalan RE: TorontoJo Apr 11, 2013 07:43 PM

            Did you learn anything that you've actually tried at home? I really want to dabble in this but wondered about specialty equipment costs, etc.

            1. re: cynalan
              TorontoJo RE: cynalan Apr 12, 2013 04:13 AM

              If you have a whipping siphon, which is not expensive, you can play with a lot of the techniques. Some (like spherification, flexible chocolate, and sponges) don't require any equipment at all, just the ingredients.

              I'm planning on making the carbonated fruit regularly, because it's so much fun and so simple if you have a whipping siphon. I also picked up a giant tub of maltodextrin to make a couple of the items that I thought were really texturally interesting.

              Obviously, anything with liquid nitrogen isn't going to happen at home. And I don't like sous vide cooking enough to get a machine, but I didn't find that the desserts we made really used the sous vide machine in a way that I couldn't replicate with a double boiler.

              1. re: TorontoJo
                cynalan RE: TorontoJo Apr 12, 2013 02:17 PM

                Thanks, I want to try one of these courses. BTW, don't know if you remember that we met at a Chowmeet several years ago at a Malysian restaurant in Richmond Hill.

                1. re: cynalan
                  TorontoJo RE: cynalan Apr 12, 2013 02:43 PM

                  Absolutely! You and your wife were at Restoran Malaysia. :)

          2. cynalan RE: TorontoJo Apr 10, 2013 07:38 PM

            Thanks for posting this. After dining at Alinea and tasting the wonderful cooking of Grant Aschatz, my interest in MG has been peaked. It's great to know that there is now a local supplier selling in small quantities. I look forward to getting some of the products and taking a course or two to learn the techniques.

            1. a
              ace123 RE: TorontoJo Apr 10, 2013 07:48 PM

              Sound like fun.
              May I know how much does it cost for the 3 hours workshop?

              1 Reply
              1. re: ace123
                TorontoJo RE: ace123 Apr 11, 2013 05:08 AM

                It was $135 for the one I took. Well worth it, in my estimation!

              2. TorontoJo RE: TorontoJo May 8, 2013 03:07 PM

                John Placko just tweeted that the next MG desserts workshop is at Nella Cucina on May 14. I assume this is the same or similar to the one I took. Lots of fun!

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