When I was living in China, the kitchen was never without rice. Long grain, short grain, jasmine, or brown, a sack or bulk bin bag would slouch in the corner, just waiting to be cooked. I would steam it, fry it, or boil it to a pulp for congee. And one day, out of severe homesickness, I decided to make horchata.
A Chinese friend was over and watched me pull a plastic carton from the fridge, which I had filled the day before with pulvertized rice grains and water to soak overnight.
"What is that?" she asked. I explained that Mexicans make a really nice icy drink out of rice water.
"But that's just like the leftover water from washing rice," she said."We dump that stuff down the drain."
"Um, true," I paused. "But when you add tons of sugar and vanilla and cinnamon, it's a great drink to go with your tacos."
"I'll stick with margaritas."Read More