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JN Kitchen: Sahlab, Your New Favorite Winter Drink!

JN Kitchen: Sahlab, Your New Favorite Winter Drink!

Jeanne Nuage headquarters has a spacious kitchen for it's employees, but unfortunately the most I've used it for is to microwave my lunch. We are going to start putting this space to good use and bring amazing recipes to you! This is a monthly series where I'll bring you delicious recipes to enjoy! You'll be seeing two versions of the recipe. One will be the original version and the other one will be the allergy free version for our sensitive friends out there (Jennifer T) 

This month we are going to start with a winter drink from the Middle East! This is the perfect drink to warm up to while the weather is starting to get cold. Most (me) might say it's better than hot chocolate! The drink's name is originally derived from the Turkish word Salep, a specific type of orchid (Orchid Genus Orchis). The drink was originally made in the Ottoman Empire from ground orchid tubers. It would thicken the drink and give it a floral flavor. As the drink spread to the middle east it was given the name Sahlab. The recipe changed because of the difficulty of finding salep flour due to how expensive it can be and more recently the ban of sending it outside of Turkey. Different cultures began to substitute the ingredients until many versions were created. In some recipes starch or rice flour is used to thicken the drink while rose water or orange blossom water is used to bring back some of those floral notes. Some use mastic to add another depth of flavor that I have personally never tried.

To make this recipe allergy free you can substitute the milk with any dairy-free milk like almond milk, oat milk, coconut milk, cashew milk, or any other plant-based milk. While corn isn't a big allergy food like the ones I'm highlighting, you can still substitute it for arrowroot powder or rice flour. 


For this recipe I'm going to share with you the version that I grew up with! We are going to start out with milk in a heavy bottom sauce pan. Then we are going to mix a little milk from the saucepan with the starch separately before adding all that back to the sauce pan. Then add the sugar. White sugar will do but brown sugar will really add that depth of flavor. Place the mixture on medium heat making sure to add the starch before heating the milk, that way it won't clump. Whisk the mixture until it heats up and thickens. Once the mixture has thickened up it'll be time to add your flavorings of either rose water, orange blossom water, vanilla, or you can even skip out on it. Now it's time for toppings!! Cinnamon, nuts, coconut flakes, and raisons are all traditional toppings. Finally, you can pour the mixture into a mug and go crazy with your topping!!... or keep it simple, However you like it. 



(-) separates substitutes 


  • 4 Cups Milk - your favorite Dairy-Free Milk (Almond, Oat, Coconut, etc.)
  • 3 tbsp Corn Starch - 3 tbsp Arrowroot Powder - 6 tbsp Rice Flour
  • Sugar - Agave - Honey to taste 


  • Rose Water
  • Orange Blossom Water
  • Vanilla 


  • Cinnamon
  • Pecans or Walnuts 
  • Coconut Flakes 
  • Raisons 


  1. Pour 4 cups of milk into a heavy bottom sauce pan
  2. Mix some milk from the sauce pan with the corn starch in a separate bowl. 
  3. Mix the corn starch mixture and sugar in with the milk and place on medium heat
  4. Continuously whisk until mixture thickens up 
  5. Once the consistency is in between a drink and a pudding, take it off the stove
  6. Mix in your choice of flavoring 
  7. Pour into mugs and decorate with your choice of toppings 
  8. Cozy up and enjoy! 


  • When adding the flavorings start out with a drop or two because it can quickly become overpowering.
  • Keep an eye on the mixture while it's on the heat and keep whisking because it could quickly burn.
  • If your mixture has burned a bit at the bottom you might still be able to rescue it by making sure not to mix in the burnt parts stuck to the bottom. 
  • When thickening with arrowroot powder drink as soon as possible because it may loose its thickness once it gets cold. 
  • When using a plant-based milk add one more tablespoon of cornstarch.
  • Pour leftovers in a bowl and decorate then refrigerate for a cold pudding! 


Reaction Video 




We're going to be filming our reactions to each of the recipes done in the JN Kitchen, and you can too! take a vid and share it with us using the details below! 


You can get really creative with this recipe and personalize it to your taste! Show us your tasty creations with the hashtag #JNSAHLAB and tag us @jeanne.nuage so we can get in on your recipe secrets as well!



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