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Starch Index:


Potato starch
Arrowroot, common name for a variety of nutritious starch extracted from the roots of certain plants growing in tropical countries, or the plants from which such starch is obtained. The true arrowroot plant, sometimes also called Bermuda arrowroot, is native to tropical Central America and is extensively cultivated in the Caribbean region. It grows up to 2 m (6 ft 6 in) tall. An acre (0.4 hectares) of arrowroot yields about 6 tonnes of rhizomes, or fleshy roots, from which about 1 tonne of starch is obtained. Arrowroot, more easily digested than other forms of starch, is also obtained from other plants of the same family. Florida arrowroot, which is poisonous until boiled, is prepared from a cycad. Arrowroot has been used to absorb poison from arrow wounds, hence the name. (Fig: True arrowroot plant)

Arrowroot and tapioca starch are very similar in source, manufacture and paste characteristics. As a result they are often confused. In fact, some commercial "arrowroot starch" marketed is actually tapioca starch. The extraction and refining is similar to cassava (tapioca). The peel contains a bitter constituent.

Scientific classification: Arrowroots belong to the family Marantaceae. The true arrowroot plant is classified as Maranta arundinacea. Florida arrowroot is prepared from Zamia integrifolia of the cycad family Zamiaceae. Other sources of starch named arrowroot are: Curcuma angustifolia - Zingiberacea; Canna edulis - Cannaceae. The starch of cassava yields a product called Brazilian arrowroot.

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Arrowroot starch
(Amylum Marantae):
From 10 to 55 microns.