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Photo by NessPace

Horchata


6 Tbsp. rice
6 oz. (about 1–1/4 cups) blanched almonds
1-inch canella cinnamon stick
3 strips lime zest, 2 inches each
1 cup white granulated sugar


The traditional way to make horchata is by hand, but to save time, a blender will
suffice. Pulverize the rice using a metate y mano (corn-grinding stone) or blender. Grind the mixture as smooth as possible. Combine the rice with the almonds, cinnamon and lime zest. Let the mixture stand overnight (at least six hours).

 

Place the mixture in the blender and blend for three to five minutes—until the mixture is smooth and no longer has a gritty texture. Add two cups of water and blend again for a few seconds. Place a large sieve over a mixing bowl, then line the sieve with three layers of damp cheesecloth. Pour in the rice mixture a little at a time and keep stirring to help the mixture go through the sieve. Once all the liquid has passed through, gather the cloth together at the top, give it a twist and squeeze out any additional liquid.


Add two cups of water and stir in sugar to taste. If the mixture is too thick, add more water. Cover and refrigerate; the drink should keep several days. Serve in a tall glass over ice. Serves six to seven.

 

from GourmetSleuth.com

 

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Check out the Destination Oaxaca story in the May/June 2006 issue of Imbibe, where this recipe first appeared, for other recipes and tasting notes.
 

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Blueberry Lavender Lemonade


1/4 cup dried lavender
1 1/2 cups boiling water
3/4–1 cup white sugar (depending on desired sweetness)
10 lemons
1/2 cup fresh blueberries
2 Tbsp. water
6 cups cold water
Ice

Place lavender in a bowl, pour boiling water over it and steep for 5-10 minutes, depending on desired strength (we steep ours for about 7 minutes). Strain the lavender, stir the sugar into the lavender water, then pour into a pitcher over ice. Add freshly squeezed lemon juice into the pitcher, add cold water and stir. In a blender, puree blueberries with 2 tablespoons of water. Add puree immediately to lemonade and stir well. Adjust sweetness and lemon strength accordingly. Garnish with a few fresh blueberries on a toothpick. Makes about 8 servings.

 

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Tarragon Cooler


6 fresh tarragon leaves
1" slice of cucumber, cut into cubes
3/4 oz. fresh lime juice
1/2 oz. simple syrup
1 oz. double-brewed chamomile tea (chilled)
1/2 oz. sparkling water
Ice cubes
Tools: mixing glass, muddler, fine-mesh strainer
Glass: tumbler
Garnish: sprig of tarragon

 

Place first two ingredients in a pint glass filled with ice. Muddle all three, breaking up the cucumber and tarragon and crushing the ice. Add simple syrup, lime juice and tea. Shake and double strain (a tea strainer works well) into an ice-filled glass. Top with sparkling water and garnish.

 

Kelley Swenson, Portland, Oregon

 

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Learn how to make your own herbal teas.

 

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Spiced Iced Coffee


8 oz. coffee
2 oz. milk
1 oz. cinnamon syrup

 

Pour hot- or cold-brewed coffee into an ice-filled tall glass. Add syrup and milk, stir and serve.

 

Cinnamon Syrup

Simmer 1 cup granulated sugar and 1 cup water in a small saucepan over low heat for 1-2 minutes. Stir gently and simmer 1-2 minutes more until sugar dissolves. Add 4 cinnamon sticks to the pan along with sugar and water. Pour cooled syrup into a container, infuse overnight in the refrigerator and strain out cinnamon before using.

 

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Get tips on perfectly brewed iced coffee.

 

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Photo by Leo Gong

Caffe Shakerato Con Cioccolato
Iced coffee and espresso drinks make perfect summertime coolers. This one, created by Clay Gordon of New World Chocolate Society and featured in Michael Turback’s scrumptious book, Mocha, is a perfect example.

 

1 oz. espresso, room temperature
1 tsp. simple syrup
A few drops of vanilla extract
1 1/2 oz. chocolate syrup
Cracked ice
Tools: muddler, shaker, strainer
Glass: highball
Garnish: lemon or orange twist

 

Fill a shaker halfway with cracked ice. Pour espresso, simple syrup and vanilla over ice. Shake vigorously for 30 seconds and strain into a chilled glass that has been lined with a spiral of chocolate syrup. Garnish. Makes one serving.

 

Michael Turback, Mocha, Ten Speed Press

 

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