Dec 31, 2012


♪ In December, drinking Horchata ♫

I heard that line in a song some time ago, and it got me wondering "what in the world is Horchata?" Whatever it was I wanted to try it! I was pleasantly surprised that it was rather easy, albeit time consuming and I had all the ingredients on hand. It's a drink that consists of soaked rice, milk, sugar and cinnamon with vanilla and other spices usually added. The recipe varies depending on what region it's from, but it is quite prevalent in Latin America. There are also many references of it being a sacred drink of the Aztecs and Mayans. 

This first recipe that I made reminded me of a light eggnog. There are other variations though, that I may experiment with in the future.


  • 1 cup uncooked long grain rice
  • 2 quarts warm water
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 1 1/4 cups of milk
  • 1 (14 oz) can of sweetened condensed milk
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1/4 cup of rum or to taste (optional)
  • ice cubes


Draining rice

1. Mix the rice and warm water together in a bowl and let stand for a 1/2 hour. Reserving the water, drain and place the rice in a blender. Blend until a paste forms - about a minute. Return the rice to the water and let stand at least 2 hours, stirring occasionally as the water turns milky white.

2. Strain the rice through a fine sieve into a bowl or pitcher. Stir in the milk, condensed milk, vanilla, cinnamon, and rum (optional) until evenly blended. Refrigerate at least 2 hours.

3. To serve, divide the ice cubes between four glasses, and pour the chilled horchata over ice. Sprinkle some cinnamon or nutmeg on top.