The rich and delicious creamy beverage, Horchata is humble yet super refreshing. With its sweet, light-colored texture, you will have experienced the taste of an ancient cultured drink with a twist.
It’s a clear winner in a league of its own. A cool drink in every way!
what is Horchata?
The traditional Spanish drink was made with soaked, ground, and sweetened tiger nuts.
In Latin America, it is made with other nuts or with white rice and cinnamon.
But it does not end here, the variations go on alongside its popularity.
This Horchata is a drink, that is simple yet flavourful and earthy when blended with nuts.
Some even add seeds like ground sesame or ground melon seeds or pumpkin seeds. This is one such recipe that has a medley of cultural influences.
With every country having its own take on this drink, I’m making this with the humble ingredient rice and almonds.
This drink can be thickened with milk, flavored with vanilla or coconut, and decorated with flowers or fruits.
While Horchata is traditionally served as a cool refreshment in Spain it can be served otherwise.
reason to love this Mexican Drink:
- Mexican drink is a cool accompaniment to anything spicy and hot. There’s no doubt that it is a beverage for the summers. It can also serve well as a dessert drink.
- All your ingredients for Horchata are right there in your kitchen pantry and if not, you can alter it according to what you have. This popular drink is so simple to make at home, and depending on what you add, you can make it a more filling one, if you want.
- Serve this over ice, with powdered cinnamon or a cinnamon stick as a garnish which makes it even better. It will be a gratifying and freshening drink filled with pure goodness.
Ingredients & The Instructions:
- Milk: Dairy or non-dairy is fine. The variations include almond milk, coconut milk, sweetened condensed or evaporated milk. Just make sure to adjust the sweetness, if you add condensed milk.
- Rice : Long grain white rice is the secret flavour. The other types are basmati rice, jasmine rice or brown rice. Rice flour can also be used when you’r short of time.
- Almonds: You can skip this ingredient if you wish to and go nut-free. Or try adding some shredded coconut.
- Cinnamon Sticks: Choose cinnamon sticks to ground cinnamon, just because the sticks will release more flavour when blended.
- Sugar: If you don’t prefer sugar, go for honey or maple syrup or even stevia. The sweetness is all up to you. Palm or cane sugar is again a preference if you don’t mind the colour of the drink. Even dates can be added instead into the blended mixture.
- Vanilla Extract & Pepper Corns : These give you the hit of flavours and spice. You can also add nutmeg, cloves, star anise or all-spice.
Step by Step instructions:
- Add rice, cinnamon sticks, and almonds to a blender, add 2.5 cups of water, and pulse for few seconds until everything blends well, just shake the jar and again pulse for another few seconds. (Photos 1, 2, 3).
- Transfer the mixture to a large bowl. (Photo 4).
- Set aside to cover and refrigerate for 6 hours. (Photo 5)
- Strain the mixture through a fine sieve. (Photo 6, 7)
- To the mixture, add milk. (Photo 8)
- Add vanilla essence (Photo 9)
- Add sugar, mix well (Photo 10)
- Pour the horchata into a serving glass, sprinkle some cinnamon and serve with ice if desired. (Photo 11, 12)
- If you have tiger nuts, it’s a big yes for a stronger and a sweeter taste, otherwise Almonds will work totally fine.
- You can also soak the rice and cinnamon for at least 8 hours or overnight, the creamier and tastier it will be.
- For a smoky ingredient, you can toast the rice before soaking the rice
- Straining at least twice is imperative to get that smooth texture; you might want to use a fine mesh strainer or a cheesecloth.
- Having a blender in hand is a weapon indeed to get that needed flavour and texture.
It all depends on what type of Horchata you make. For those lactose intolerant ones, the fiber and protein-rich tiger nuts boost up the nutrition in the Horchata.
Dairy-free milk with all naturally sweet ingredients exhibits healthy attributes.
For a healthier version, you can use whole-grain brown rice and cashews for the creaminess and stevia for the sweetness.
While the one with the white rice and milk will cost you some calories, it can be taken in portion control for a treat to yourself.
Remember to not keep Horchata at room temperature for more than 30 minutes. They tend to ferment, so judge the color, change in texture, and smell before consumption.
Frequently Asked Questions:
- What non-dairy types of milk can be used?
Coconut, almond, or cashew milk.
- What other nuts can be used in this recipe?
Apart from Almonds, Peanuts, Cashews, or even Pumpkin seeds, melon seeds, sesame seeds or cantaloupe seeds can be used.
- What fruits compliment mexican drink?
Apricots, Berries or Cantaloupe, or some seasonal fruits like Kiwi, Mangoes, Strawberries or Nectarines.
- How long does Horchata recipe last?
It only lasts for 2-3 days in the refrigerator if it contains milk; if dairy-free, you can refrigerate for up to 10 days.
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