Horchata

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Horchata is great to have in the fridge because you find uses for it all day long… coffee creamer, added to oatmeal or your morning cereal,  in smoothies or just a protein rich snack. But BEWARE. This looks like milk but it is not. Do not go to take a sip of this and think milk or milkshake. I did and it was almost a deal breaker. BUT when I finally started appreciating it for what it was, I loved it. Also its vegan and gluten free. win-win (win)

original recipe here

(Makes about 7 cups)

ingredients:

  • 1 cup raw cashews (or use raw or blanched almonds)
  • 2/3 cup white rice, uncooked (medium or long-grain preferred)
  • 2 1/2 cups water + 3 cups water
  • one 3-inch cinnamon stick [We used two]
  • 2/3 cup sugar, or to taste* [We only used 1/3 cup and it was perfect for us]
  • 1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract (increase to 1 teaspoon, or to taste, if you love vanilla)

directions:

  1. In a large blender canister, Vita-Mix canister, or large bowl combine cashews, uncooked rice, 2 1/2 cups warm tap water, cinnamon stick, cover and place in the refrigerator for 8 to 12 hours.
  2. Remove canister from the refrigerator, remove the cinnamon stick, and blend the mixture for 2 to 3 minutes on high speed, or until blended as smoothly as possible.
  3. Add sugar (to taste), vanilla extract, 3 cups more water and blend again for 2 more minutes, or until mixture is as smooth as possible.
  4. Let the blender mix sit for about a minute. (all of the solids will sink to the bottom). Then blend again for an additional minute.
  5. If desired, strain horchata through a sieve or cheesecloth [The Almond mush at the bottom of our first batch was a bit grainy for drinking but was lovely in oatmeal so if you strain it, keep both components.]
  6. Serve immediately as is, over ice, or refrigerate and serve chilled, shaking before if mixture has separated. Horchata will keep in the refrigerator for 3 to 5 days; use common sense.

Notes from PearAndPlum:

FIRST time through we made this with almonds (which is the the traditional way) and it was great.

SECOND TIME, we tried cashews and it was a much smoother drink. We also added 2 cinnamon sticks instead of the 1 it calls for and sweetened it with a combo of honey and sugar instead of just sugar.

NEXT TIME we may also use some lime zest?

Notes from original recipe: *I used traditional recipes as reference for the sugar (and they use more than I did). You may wish to start with 1/3 cup sugar, and increase from there if you prefer something less sweet. You can use another form of sweetener, to taste. All amounts are to taste. If you are serving over ice, it will also water down and become less sweet, something to keep in mind. This is a sweet beverage; it’s not supposed to be “barely sweet”; it’s supposed to be sweet. The Mexicans are not shy with sugar; they pour sweetened condensed milk over sweet potatoes as I witnessed in Mexico City. If you prefer a thinner horchata increase the amount of water, to taste, or strain it. Whatever blender you use, blend, blend, blend. Depending on type of blender used, and taste preferences, strain if desired.

tags: almond milk, cashew milk, gluten free, homemade nut milk, mexico, oatmeal, rice milk, smoothies, vegan, drink, breakfast, snack

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3 thoughts on “Horchata

  1. I agree that cashews would be good for a smooth texture. I’ve never made horchata, but I would love to try this recipe.

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