Homemade (or not) Horchata With Rum: Adult Dessert for Labor Day

In The Imbibery and Distillery by Christine McKellar

Did you know that the sweet, milky beverage known as horchata can also be made with either almonds, sesame seeds or tigernuts, instead of rice? A traditional drink in Spain, South America and Mexico, horchata is  wonderful summer drink and serves as a soothing complement to spicy Mexican food. Below is a recipe for homemade Horchata.

However, if you’re feeling lazy and want to cheat, Califia Farms (who also produces my favorite unsweetened Roasted Coconut Almond Milk) offers two varieties of horchata: Vanilla Coconut and Classic Cinnamon.  One of my favorite dairies, Tillamook, makes a fabulous Cinnamon Horchata ice cream too. Blend that up with some rum and see where it takes you! Horchata also makes for a delicious frappe.





1 cup uncooked long grain rice

2 quarts warm water

1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon

1 1/4 cups milk

1 (14 ounce) can sweetened condensed milk

1 teaspoon vanilla extract

1/4 cup rum, or to taste

16 cubes ice



Mix the rice and warm water together in a bowl. Let stand for 1/2 hour. Reserve the water, drain, and place the rice in a food processor reservoir. Add the cinnamon and process until a paste forms. Return the rice paste to the water and let stand at least 2 hours. Stir occasionally. The water will turn milky white.

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

Divide the ice cubes between four glasses. Pour the chilled horchata over the ice.