Is there anything which identifies high ratio shortening (appart from a label)? For example if I look in the ingredients will I be able to tell which is which? Where I live in Zimbabwe I have yet to come across shortening but I have seen vegetable fats which looks identical to shortening from other countries (a white block of mass).
Is there anything I should look out for when buying so I don't mess up an icing? And what is puff pastry fat made from vegetable oils? Can I use that as shortening?
High ratio shortening isn't generally available in retail stores. It's a specialty order product from bakery supply shops. I doubt that the block veg. shortening you're finding is high ratio.
High ratio has a high percentage of trans fats. In nutritionally labeled food, that should be spelled out very clearly. In re-packaged foods, that info is probably not available.
In the US, trans fats have been removed from veg. shortening available in grocery stores, but what you have available may have a small percentage of trans fats in them.
Sorry, can't answer the question about puff pastry.
High Ratio Shortening is more about the process used to hydrogenate the solid vegetable fat. You can google it and it may make more sense to you.