How to Make Malabi – Middle Eastern Orchid Pudding

Malabi is a Middle Eastern pudding traditionally made with orchid root and milk and topped with shredded coconut, cinnamon, nuts, or in this case- goji berries. It is basically sahlav, cold, and turned into pudding format.

What you really need to know is that once you make the magical drink of sahlav, you can stick the leftovers in the fridge (preferably in adorable tiny teacups) and have pudding for breakfast the next morning.

“In Jerusalem, before the days of coke and lattes, tamarind drink and soos (made from licorice twig) were the typical refreshing summer beverages; their winter counterpart was sachlav”

I got this recipe, like most other things I’m cooking up these days from the Jerusalem cookbook by Yotam Ottolenghi and Sammi Tamimi- if I haven’t said it yet: go out and get this cookbook.

It’s been on countless gift guides across the web, and really, what foodie wouldn’t want such a gorgeous cookbook?

What is Malabi?
  • 50 grams cornflour
  • 500 ml milk
  • 200 ml water
  • 80 g caster sugar (I used demura, and it was fine)
  • 25 g desiccated coconut, to garnish

Whisk cornflour together with 100 ml of the milk to make a paste. Pour the remaining milk, water, and sugar into a saucepan and heat so that the sugar dissolves.

When the mixture begins to release steam, whisk in the cornflour paste. Continue to whisk until it turns into a thick custard.

Remove from heat and pour into your holder of choice: wine or champagne glasses make for a classy dessert. For a more homey feel pour into teacups like above.

Refrigerate for at least 3 hours. Garnish with coconut/ nuts/ cinnamon/ berries- whatever you like!


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