Horchata

in Drinks

I have a lot of small/weird, personal dreams.  One of which is to be apart of the feature in Vanity Fair called “My Stuff,” where they pick one person a month, who’s usually sorta famous/successful, and ask them to list their favorite stuff. Which usually includes things like their favorite toothpaste, jeans, charity, lipstick, flowers, etc.  You catch my drift.  And since these people are usually kinda loaded, all their stuff tends to be super fancy and expensive.  But if I did the feature, I’d keep it pretty normal. Here’s a little example of how my feature would go:

Where do you live: West Hollywood.

Coffee Maker: French Press.

Jeans: J Brand.

Underwear: La Perla. Fancy.

Favorite Charity: Humane Society.

Sheets: I dunno. I got ‘em at Ross in the discount bin.

Stationary:  Multi-colored post-its.

Necessary Extravagance: Vanilla beans.

Sneakers: Converse.

Flowers: Peonies make my heart jump.

Favorite Movie: That’s an unfair question.  ..

Perfume: None. I like the smell of soap.

Toothpaste:  Tom’s.

 

And then they always have a little tid-bit about who you are and such. Mine might go something like this:

Adrianna is a pretty cool food blogger.  She likes things like a perfectly fried egg and sweet pancakes on Sunday mornings.  She dislikes when she has to pry her toast out of a hot toaster and burns her hand (this happened tonight). And often times gets weirded out when she sees adults drinking milk with their dinner.

Yes, you heard right.  When adults drink milk with dinner, it really freaks me out.  I don’t know why.  I can’t explain it.  Well maybe it’s because I just imagine milk being mixed with spaghetti in their tummy and that’s kinda gross.  So when I go to a Mexican restaurant or taquiera, and see adults all around me drinking a white, milky-looking drink, I begin to judge a little bit.  But then I’m quickly reminded that what they’re sippin’ on is incredible…because it’s Horchata!

Horchata isn’t milky at all.  Really it needs to hire a publicist and get a new look.  A total makeover because this thing is down right amazing and tastes nothing like milk what-so-ever. It’s refreshing…nutty, and a little spicy from the cinnamon and nutmeg.  The consistency is pretty thin…and really, I can’t think of another drink that can compete with it.  I think it might earn its way onto my list of favorite stuff!

 

Horchata

Recipe adapted from Rick Bayless

Print this recipe!

6 tablespoon white rice
1 1/4 cups blanched almonds (I used raw and it was great)
2 cinnamon sticks
Pinch of nutmeg
3 2-inch strips of lime zest(colored rind only) 3/4 inch wide
2 1/2 cups of hot water
about 1/2 cup sugar
2 cups of cold water

Pulverize the rice in a blender or spice grinder. Transfer to a medium-size bowl and add the almonds, cinnamon stick, nutmeg and lime zest. Stir in 2 1/2 cups of hot tap water, cover and let stand at least 6 hours or preferably, overnight. Scoop the mixture into a blender jar and blend for 3 to 4 minutes, until no longer feels very gritty. Add 2 cups of water, and then blend for a few seconds more. Set a large sieve over a mixing bowl and line with 3 layers of dampened cheese cloth. Pour in the almond-mixture a little at time, gently stirring to help the liquid pass through. When all has been strained, gather up the corners of the cheesecloth and twist them together to trap the dregs inside. Squeeze the package firmly to expel all the remaining liquid. Add 1 cup of water and stir in 1/2 cup of sugar. If the consistency is too thick, add additional water. Cover and refrigerate until you’re ready to serve. Stir before pouring.

{ 27 comments… read them below or add one }

Katrina April 9, 2010 at 9:04 am

This looks sooo good!

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Monica April 9, 2010 at 9:42 am

I have travelled to Mexico most of my life, first as vacations spots then for work and I live in Florida (west coast) who is full of taquerias, and mexican mom & pop places.. I live 5 blocks away from a TACO BUS (yep) and they have the BEST Horchata, outside of Mexico. And everytime I drink a huge glass of the stuff I mumbled to myself “I got to find the recipe and make this at home”…. thanks for GIVING me the recipe for making this!

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Kayla April 9, 2010 at 12:02 pm

I totally buy my sheets at Ross too!!! High tread count, low price. :)

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Randi April 9, 2010 at 1:27 pm

LOVE horchata – always think I’m going to make it, and never do. i’ll get me some cheese cloth and remedy that post-haste. thanks for this recipe! also, who doesn’t love rick bayless?

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Adrianna April 9, 2010 at 2:05 pm

Monica–can’t wait til you try it! let me know how it turns out.

Kayla–yep! super cheap for sorta high quality sheets!

Randi–buy some cheese cloth and dooooo it! and you can’t not love rick bayless. he’s amazing!

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Fair April 10, 2010 at 12:56 pm

This seems so easy to ‘cook’ and I can’t wait to try it. It’s gone to the top of my to-do list.

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Abbey April 10, 2010 at 1:44 pm

Hi, I live with someone who’s allergic to cinnamon, I was wondering if there’s any alternative you would suggest? It seems like a big part of the flavour that I wouldn’t want to just do without!
Thanks

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Kirstin April 10, 2010 at 2:10 pm

I’ve never heard of this but I’m totally intrigued. I think I might buy almonds just to make this. Do the almonds have to be blanched or can you use raw?

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Adrianna April 10, 2010 at 5:36 pm

Abbey–Hmmm…well I would maybe do a little combo action of nutmeg, allspice, cloves and ginger. I’d start of with a tiny pinch of each and then after it’s done soaking for the 6 hrs or overnight, then I’d add more depending on taste. But you’re definitely right–the hint of spiciness is what makes this drink awesome. Let me know how it turns out!

Kirstin–I actually just changed the recipe. The original recipe dictated blanched, but I only had raw and it turned out great.

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Fuji Mama April 10, 2010 at 11:31 pm

I absolutely love this post. Great way to introduce the horchata recipe. I’m with you–horchata definitely needs to hire a publicist, because it does not receive it’s due!

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Ryan April 11, 2010 at 12:49 pm

Favorite Blog: definitely acozykitchen

Gatta try this horchata business. It’s looks way better than my signature milk pasta smoothie…maybe it’s a white guy thing…

Keep the goodness coming!

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Claire April 11, 2010 at 7:22 pm

i love horchata! great pictures, definitely want to make this very soon

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Amy April 11, 2010 at 10:36 pm

I’ve never heard of this drink, but it sounds mighty yummy. I’m on a no dairy kick so this is perfect for a creamy drink!

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Memoria April 11, 2010 at 11:18 pm

Your horchata looks beautiful. I love the shot of the cinnamon sticks.

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grace April 12, 2010 at 3:14 am

great post–we’re a lot alike. although i’ve never been fortunate to taste an authentic batch of horchata, it’s so appealing and beautiful–thanks for your recipe!

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Hannah April 12, 2010 at 9:10 am

Another lovely non-dairy drink option! This sounds like a great thing to have on a hot day.

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El Mikee April 13, 2010 at 10:39 am

Horchata has been my favorite drink since i was a little kid. My mom makes it, my wife makes it, and when i can´t have some, i´ll go to the park and buy a really big cup and remember my fondest mexican childhood memories.

I don´t care if it looks like milk, even now that i´ve became lactose intolerant. I´d rather have some horchata.

Saludos. :-)

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Lisa Avant April 29, 2010 at 8:40 pm

Great recipe. Sounds delicious and wholesome. I will be sure to try this one! Thank you for posting it.

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Andrea @ Fork Fingers Chopsticks May 27, 2010 at 4:01 pm

Hello. My first time to your site. Great recipes and pics. I like me some horchata too. I drink it cold and hot and usually skip the lime but maybe next time I’ll add some nutmeg to mine.

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Bob July 27, 2010 at 11:49 pm

Only problem I have with Horchata is once I start on it, I find it impossible to stop.
Anyone know of a local Horchata-holics anonymous?

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Nicole October 23, 2010 at 7:58 pm

I was wondering if this would work with another type of nut? My mother is allergic to almonds (recently discovered) but LOVES Horchata. Do you think this would work with cashews or other nuts? It’s really only almonds she can’t have. (odd, I know)

Thanks!

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Brandy November 12, 2010 at 10:31 am

I would use walnuts…

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Jennylectric November 14, 2010 at 11:00 am

I just discovered this summer at a Chicago street fair the glory of horchata iced cafe. Yep, 2 great things mixed together to make one amazing thing. We ended up going back for more the rest of the day(that and they were just $1 while other stalls were selling pop for $3 a bottle). I’ve since made it at home much to the amazement of friends and family. I monkeyed around with the ratios, but we like it with half a pitcher of each(adjust to taste). I highly suggest making a whole pitcher-you’ll need it. Perfect for brunch.
I’m sure there’s a way to make this a more ‘adult’ beverage, but I’m just not sure what will taste good in this-kahlua maybe?

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Mary Elle December 16, 2010 at 10:46 am

I’m looking for a more efficient way to strain the rice mix rather than having to continually buy cheese cloth.
I tried a gold basket coffee filter but the mixture passed very slowly.
Any suggestions?

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Alejandra June 7, 2011 at 12:34 pm

Love horchata. This sounds perfect for a mexican fiesta themed graduation party my friend is having this weekend.

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dana October 16, 2012 at 7:40 pm

Am i supposed to blend the cinnamon sticks.in the blender too? Can’t wait to taste the finished product!

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capresso espresso April 18, 2013 at 4:29 am

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