Tuesday, January 11, 2011

Nicaraguan Chocolate Milk: National Milk Day

January 11 is National Milk Day, and, of course, it should be Chocolate Milk. On September 27, Chocolate Milk Day, I posted that Chocolate Milk tastes great with a pinch of salt. It makes a big difference in bringing out the flavor of the chocolate.

Today I couldn't help but post the Borden Vintage Ad for Chocolate Milk (Chocolate Drink) that could be served both hot and cold, but it's nothing like the following recipe for Nicaraguan Chocolate Milk!

Want to try something different? This is Myriam Paiz's recipe for Nicaraguan Chocolate Milk that appeared in the April 1994 issue of Sunset. Rice gives the drink body and that with freshly roasted cocoa beans-- chocolate in a more elemental form--adds a fresh, complex flavor. Add to that some cinnamon, and there's a subtle spiciness.

Nicaraguan Chocolate Milk (Orchata de cacao)

1 1/2 cups long-grain white rice
2 cups (about 2/3 lb.) cocoa beans
4 cups water
3 cinnamon sticks (each about 3 in.), broken into 1-inch pieces
8 cups whole, low-fat, or nonfat milk
1 1/2 tablespoons vanilla
1 cup sugar
Ice (optional)

1. Place rice in a bowl, cover with cool water, and let stand to soften somewhat, to 24 hours; drain.
2. Place beans in a 9-inch metal baking dish. Bake in 500 degree oven 5 minutes. Shake beans.  Continue to bake until beans smoke and some skins have split, 5 to 8 minutes longer.
3. In a blender, place half the rice, cocoa beans, water, and cinnamon. Whirl until ingredients are very finely pureed.
4. Place a large, fine strainer over a bowl; pour cocoa mixture into strainer and stir to extract liquid. Discard residue. Repeat with remaining rice, cocoa, water, and cinnamon.
5. Rinse strainer, then line with a double thickness of damp cheesecloth. Pour cocoa liquid through strainer into a bowl, stirring to extract all liquid; discard residue.
6. To cocoa liquid, add milk, vanilla, and sugar; stir until sugar dissolves. Serve plain or over ice. If making ahead, chill, covered, up to 3 days. Stir to serve Makes about 10 1/2 cups, 10 servings.


Bartending Certification said...

Ohh! Hot Cocoa! I love drinking hot cocoa in the cold weather! It feels like heaven when drinking that sacred drink.

Anonymous said...

My new neighbors just gave me some...had to look it up...very, very delicious!

Anonymous said...

My new neighbors, of Nicaraguan descent, just gave me a cup they prepared for Christmas...yummy! Had to look it up to see what makes it so rich and delicious! Thanks, new friends!!!

Anonymous said...

Im nicaraguan myself. My family is from Granada. and in nicaragua its just called cacao. Not horchata of any kind. its very delicious n very nuticious. because in nicaragua they make it with 100% cocoa. naked n organic. its better than any powder chocolate you buy at a store. In my family we raise our children to drink evven while living in U.S to drink cacao rather than any powder drink. because its much better in nutrients. Drink a full glass n it will put you to sleep! Lol! my husband loves it n he isnt nicaraguan. n only in nicaragua will make a drink wit h unfermented cocao beans. i do urge people to really try this drink. a local nicaraguan stores are called fritanga. Sorry for mispelled words i used my cell.