Horchatas are an extremely popular fixture at basically every taco shop here in San Diego, though I didn't know anything about them until I moved here. They are a rice-based milky beverage made with cinnamon and sugar, making them a sweet and satisfying accompaniment to your favorite burrito. Here is a recipe that recreates the magic of the horchata with a non-dairy twist. It also uses agave nectar and brown rice, making it a much better alternative for those of us with glucose sensitivity.
Vegan Creamy Horchata
(Makes 4 servings)
1 cup uncooked long-grain brown rice (Brown basmati is what I traditionally use, but I think any type of brown rice should work for this recipe.)
2/3 cup raw almonds
3-inch cinnamon stick
4 cups water
1 tablespoon agave syrup, maple syrup, or another liquid sweetener
Ice or water
Ground cinnamon, to taste
1) Rinse the rice well under cool water. Throw it in a large container with a lid and add the almonds, cinnamon stick, and water. Let this all soak together overnight for at least 8 hours.
2) When the soaking is done, pour the mixture into a blender. Add the agave, and continue blending until smooth. Make sure to leave the cinnamon in. Pour the blended mixture through a fine-mesh strainer or cheesecloth.
3) If you are going to serve it right away, add 1 cup ice and blend it again to cool it down. If not, blend in another 1/2 cup water and stick it in the fridge. Serve cold with ice cubes and some cinnamon sprinkled on top.