Feast - At the Global Table



July 1, 2010

Spain - Nuts for Horchata
Christopher Hall

Served so cold it's sometimes slushy, horchata is the essential drink of hot Spanish summers. Unlike its rice-based counterpart in Latin America, Spain's version is made from the chufa (tigernut), the tuber of a grassy plant. Chufas are dried for three months, ground up, and soaked in water, sugar, and often cinnamon and lemon peel. The process results in a milky, sweet beverage with an almondlike flavor. Legally protected by a "denominacíon de origen", the only chufas in Europe grow in and around Valencia. Horchata stands dot the coastal city between March and October. Year-round, "valencianos" sip in style at the central Mercado Colón - a soaring modernista masterpiece - or at old-time horchaterías like El Siglo and Santa Catalina. Outside town, cool off on the terrace at Horchatería Daniel with a frosty glass and a "fartón", a cigar-shaped pastry that's perfect for dunking.

$7 for a liter bottle, latienda.com

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