Everybody loves horchata! Not everybody loves chia pudding, though — not YET, anyways, but they will. Chia seeds are like the thing these days. You can easily do a cheater’s version of this recipe with boxed horchata in a pinch.
This takes time! 8 hrs. for horchata, 8 hrs. for pudding. (It’s a whole bunch of passive action, hanging around waiting for water to be absorbed.) So if you want pudding in your evening meal, start the horchata soaking the night before, finish it up the next morning, and set the pudding in the fridge for the day. You might not know what’s for dinner, but you will definitely know what’s for dessert.
1 C. white rice (long grain is trad, short grain works fine)
1 C. blanched & sliced almonds, toasted
1 cinnamon stick, at least 2″ (if pulverizing, 2 1″ pieces)
4 C. warm water
1/2 C. sugar, or to taste
Juice from 1 lime
In a blender or spice grinder, grind the rice so it results in fine, cornmeal-like pieces. (If you want to pulverize the cinnamon, do so with the rice.) Put the rice in a bowl and grind the almonds ’til they are itty bitty but not paste. Add almonds to rice, pour in the warm water, and pop the cinnamon stick on top. Stir. Cover and let sit at room temperature for 8 to 12 hours.
Remove cinnamon stick, add sugar & blend until smooth. Strain through cheesecloth or superfine mesh. Add lime juice to taste. You can adjust the consistency by adding additional water or rice milk.
Pudding needs (these measurements make a good amount for 2 people, but you can easily halve or double):
1/4 C. chia seeds
1 1/4 C. horchata, homemade or boxed
Stir horchata & chia together in a bowl. Let sit 5 minutes; stir again. Let sit 10 minutes; stir again. Cover and stick in fridge for 8 hours. You can adjust the consistency by adding additional horchata.
Serve in dainty bowls with cinnamon grated on top.