Homemade Horchata I & II

horchata
Horchata (pronounced or-chaw-tah) is a song by the band Vampire Weekend. It is also a traditional latin drink. What goes in the drink depends on the recipes country of origin. This particular version is not a song or song based, it is a milky drink made with rice and cinnamon,  which is a Californian Mexican version of the drink. My husband & son love this stuff, but it’s expensive to buy pre-made. This homemade version (Horchata I) means waiting 24 hours before it’s ready but other than that it is really simple to put together and costs a fraction of the store bought variety. Below Horchata I is Horchata II, revenge of the Horchata… no, no it isn’t, but it is a quicker and just as tasty way to make this drink.

Horchata I

Ingredients

  • 1 cup uncooked long grain white rice
  • A 2″ Mexican cinnamon stick, broken up into pieces
  • 40 fl oz of water
  • ½ tsp vanilla extract
  • ½ cup white granulated sugar
  • 8 fl oz non-dairy creamer or half & half

Instructions

  1. Put the rice, broken up cinnamon stick and water into a blender (I use a pitcher and an immersion blender). Blend for 60 seconds.
  2. Pour into a bowl (or leave in the pitcher), cover and let sit at room temperature for 8 to 12 hours.
  3. Strain liquid into a clean pitcher, discard the rest (rice & cinnamon bits).
  4. Stir in the creamer, sugar and vanilla. Refrigerate until cold & stir before serving

Makes approximately 40 Ounces

Horchata II
I was making a more traditional “slow” version of horchata (above) which everyone liked, but then I figured out how to make a nearly instant version that everyone seems to like just as much. I am listing both recipes, though I doubt I’ll ever go through the hassle of the overnight version again.

Horchata II

Ingredients

  • 1 cup cooked long grain white rice
  • 1/2 a tsp cinnamon
  • 40 fl oz of water
  • ½ tsp vanilla extract
  • ¼ to ½ cup white granulated sugar (depending on how sweet you want it)
  • 2 TBSP non-dairy creamer (not milk powder!)

Instructions

  1. Put the rice, cinnamon, water, vanilla, sugar and creamer into a blender (I use a pitcher and an immersion blender). Blend for 2 minutes.
  2. Strain several times with a fine mesh strainer, until next to no “cleggy” bits remain in the strainer. Do NOT force the rice through the strainer. Discard the cleggy bits every time you strain it.
  3. Taste and add more sugar if you want it sweeter, then pour into an airtight container with a lid and refrigerate.
  4. Shake well before serving. Serve cold and/or over ice, with a sprinkle of extra cinnamon if desired.

Makes approximately 40 Ounces