Food escapades in modernist cuisine

Mexican Style Horchata

My wife and I typically hit up Anna's Taqueria whenever we're in Allston and want a quick, cheap bite to eat. We were in the area the other day and decided to grab lunch there. We each grabbed a super quesadilla with carnitas, and my wife ordered a side of horchata for us to share. I've had horchata a number of times before, but it's been a while and drinking it again the other day reminded me just how much I enjoy it.

When I got home, I found a number of recipes for horchata online. Spanish style horchatas are made from chufa nuts, but they're incredibly hard to find. Almost all of the Mexican style recipes I found called for white rice, water, cinnamon stick, sugar, and milk. These are all ingredients already in my pantry, so I decided to give it a go.

Using my Vitamix, I first blended about a cup of long grain white rice until it was a fine powder.

I emptied the rice powder into a small container and then added about three and a half cups of warm water to it along with one cinnamon stick. I stored this mixture in my fridge for about 24 hours to allow the cinnamon and rice flavor to infuse.

After the mixture finished steeping, I removed the cinnamon stick and then blended everything together until smooth. A lot of recipes recommend straining out the rice solids using cheesecloth at this point, but I didn't have any and even the finest strainer I had didn't make any difference. I finally added about a cup of sugar and 2-3 cups of whole milk, stirring until incorporated.

Add a dash of ground cinnamon when serving. Here's the final result again, which was pretty close to Anna's version:

Note: you can add a shot of espresso to the horchata to mix things up and add an interesting spin on the traditional version.


Anonymous said...

I love Anna's!! I was there this past Friday night!

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