If you've tried horchata, that creamy, ultra-refreshing rice drink served at taquerias, just imagine it with an Indian spin, and you've got the cooler served at All Spice in San Mateo, California (allspicerestaurant.com; they also add a saffron thread or two to each glass, and sometimes, a splash of half-and-half). For classic Mexican horchata, just use regular white rice and 2 cinnamon sticks, and omit the cardamom.
Sunset AUGUST 2011
1. Whirl rice in a food processor to break into small pieces. Pour into a bowl and add 3 1/2 cups water, cinnamon stick and cardamom pods. Cover and let stand overnight.
2. Stir in sugar and vanilla. Purée half in batches in a blender until very smooth, about 1 1/2 minutes. Strain twice, through 3 layers of damp cheesecloth and then through a very fine strainer, into a pitcher. Pour over ice.
Note: Nutritional analysis is per 3/4-cup serving.
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