A simple little thing to bring you much joy. Though an everyday drink in Mexico, Horchata's roots are at least Spanish, and in all probability Arabic. Whereas the Spanish Horchata is made with tiger nut (actually a tuber and not a nut at all), Mexico employs rice, almonds, vanilla –and on occasion coconut– to make this wonderfully refreshing drink.
Horchata is commonly found at paletarias (or ice-creameries) across Mexico, and those initiated may well skip the ice-cream and go straight for the horchata, such is it's appeal. This recipe is from Campeche, where the gulf of Mexico provides an abundance of coconut that happily augment this delicious drink.
Horchata de Coco
1 fresh coconut, pulp and juice (a small tin of coconut cream may be used in a pinch)
400ml evaporated milk
1 cup long grain rice, soaked for 2 hours in 1 cup boiling water
1 cup sugar
500ml cold water
2 teaspoons vanilla essence
100g ground almonds
1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
Ice, as needed
- In a good blender, liquify coconut juice, pulp and the evaporated milk.
- Add rice (still in its water), almonds, vanilla, sugar and cinnamon and blend with the cold water for about 2 minutes.
- Strain into a jug with ice. The ice will tone down the intense sweetness of the drink, you may need to adjust this to your liking with a little chilled water.