Every now and then Oscar asks me to make him something that reminds him of home. He's been in America for maybe a decade give or take and I jump at the chance to bring back some good memories. Sometimes he doesn't ask but I take note of what he orders when we're out. I usually can't help but put my own spin on dishes but this one is pretty classic. And I knew he wouldn't argue with the rum. This drink is really easy, can be made ahead of time, and is perfect for parties.
You basically start out with water and short grain white rice. I've heard of horchatas being made with other grains including brown but I kept it simple. Mix with water [I used less than normal because I knew I would be adding more fluid later]. Blend in a blender and let rest for at least a few hours. I let ours mix overnight. Then pour into another container through a cheesecloth to separate and throw away the grains. You're left with a creamy water.
I mixed that with a bit of milk [coconut milk would be great in this but we didn't have it]. Then a bit of simple syrup to sweeten it up. I just mixed sugar and water one to one, brought it to a boil until clear, and combined with the horchata mixture after it cooled. In my mind, horchata is a bit of a summer drink so I added rum to make it season appropriate ;)
I dusted it with cinnamon but ground cloves or star anise would be great as well. Serve cooled over ice.
5 cups of water, 1 reserved
1 cup short grain white rice
1 cup sugar
1/2 cup milk or coconut milk
cinnamon to taste
rum to taste
Mix rice with 4 cups of water and blend. Set aside for several hours or overnight at room temp. Stir occasionally and right before transferring. Transfer to new container with cheesecloth to strain out the rice grains.
Mix 1 cup of water and 1 cup of sugar and bring to a boil. Once water turns clear and no grit is felt, remove from heat and let cool. Wait until it's room temp and mix with horchata mixture. Mix in milk and rum. Serve with ice and dust with cinnamon.