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May 25, 2009 11:43 AM

Sahlab/Sahlep in NYC

I have only had sahlab once prepared properly in Istanbul. It was delicious, creamy, frothy, heaven!
If you have never had it, sahlab (or sahlep) is made from ground orchid root, mixed with milk and flavorings such as almond or pistachio. The cafe where I drank it made it frothy like a cappuncinno.
I have been able to find sahlab pudding mixes (at my favorite spice store on Lexington somewhere in the 20s) but am still looking for a cafe/restaurant that can make it the way I had it in Istanbul.
Any suggestions?
(Or any ideas as to how to make it the same way at home? I've experimented with the mix- trying to use different ratios of mix to milk, tried to froth the milk- nothing's worked).

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  1. You can also find a very good custard version at Tanoreen, in Bay Ridge, but the only place I've found in the city that serves sahlep as a beverage is Güllüoglu, on Coney Island Ave.:

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    1. Try the sahlab drink at Horus Cafe in the East Village - I don't know how it measures up again your Istanbul memory but this one was my first taste and it was good enough to have me wandering round online looking to recreate it - it wasn't just frothy on top a la cappuccino, it was frothy and creamy all the way down with a little of what looked like sesame seeds (?) and finely chopped nuts. They describe it as "nuts, coconuts and milk" but I didn't taste coconut, or the rosewater that some recipes mention either.