Tue, Dec 3, 2013
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It was surprising to me that until a year ago I had never had horchata. Going to college in southern California and all that was involved with getting a degree in French and Spanish provided me with ample opportunities to be exposed to horchata, not to mention my time in Spain and the countless taquerias where I’ve eaten. In fact, it’s one of those things that I’ve seen so many times that I almost thought I’d had it before. But I hadn’t. Fortunately, my good friend, Jonina, shared her horchata recipe with me. Though I know that it is typically served in the heat of summer as a cool, refreshing beverage, I also think of this cinnamon-spiced rice drink in autumn. Throughout Spain, Mexico and Latin America there are many variations of this drink but the recipe below seems to be fairly true to a basic horchata (with less sugar!).
- 4 cups water
- 1 cup brown rice
- 1 cinnamon stick
- 1-2 vanilla sticks, scrape the inside OR vanilla extract to taste
- ¼ cup agave syrup OR sugar, sweetened to taste
- Rinse the rice and put it in a bowl.
- Add 4 cups of boiling water and the cinnamon stick.
- Let the mixture rest for 3 hours.
- Blend the mixture together while adding the vanilla and agave/sugar to taste.
- Continue blending the mixture until you get a milk liquid.
- Strain the liquid with a cheesecloth or a really fine colander.
- Keep the liquid in a sealed container in the refrigerator and serve the drink chilled.
- Discard the remaining solids.