Silky, refreshing, and warmly spiced, horchata has inspired everything from ice cream flavors to beer. The agua fresca is traditionally made by creating a milk from tiger nuts, almonds, rice, or other grains, which is then sweetened and rounded out with some vanilla and cinnamon. Since it requires a process of blending, soaking, and straining, making horchata can seem like a project. The payoff, though, is an impressive make-ahead party drink that doubles as dessert — made all the better by a little booze.
Huertas, in New York’s East Village, finishes their horchata off with a few churns in the slushie machine and a splash of rum. You can pour yours into a blender with a few cups of ice for a similar effect, or just serve it as is.
Horchata Slushie (Adapted slightly from Huertas)
(Makes approximately 1 1/2 qt)
- 1 1/4 cups tiger nuts (soaked overnight)
- 2 1/3 cups hot water
- 1 cinnamon stick
- 1 qt almond milk
- 1 1/4 cups virgin peach nectar
- 1/4 cup plus 2 tbsp sugar
- citric acid to taste
- Blend tiger nuts with water, sugar, cinnamon, and about half of the almond Milk. Double strain through cheese cloth.
- Whisk in peach purée and remaining almond milk. Add citric acid to taste.
- Cool overnight.
- Serve chilled or blend with ice, adding 1 1/2 ounce of rum per glass.