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From Cook's Thesaurus: sahlab Notes: This is made from orchid tubers and has a pleasant, flowery smell. Look for it in Middle Eastern markets. Substitutes: cornstarch (Substitute measure for measure.)
I've spotted some drink and ice cream recipes on the web using it. (Google "sahlab recipe")
From Aromas of Aleppo, The Legendary Cuisine of Syrian Jews, by Poopa Dweck:
Sahlab is a starch found in the ground bulb of the orchid Orchis mascula. The starch acts as a thickening agent and imparts a unique flavor to the hot milk based beverage of the same name. The drink was a very popular tonic in 17th century England and was said to cure gastrointestinal ailments.
Her recipe for Sahlab (Floral Drink) includes milk, sahlab powder, sugar, rose or orange blossom water, garnished with pistachios and cinnamon.
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