When most people think of Mexican cuisine they don’t picture beverages to go with it. But in all cultures, the drink paired with the food is an important part of the entire experience. Imagine having a fine red snapper prepared Mexican style for dinner, then washing it down with orange juice or milk. Healthy, but somehow it just doesn’t fit.
Fortunately, there is a huge array of tasty, healthy Mexican beverages to go with every meal.
Horchata is a traditional Mexican favorite made from rice, water, cinnamon, almonds and sugar. But milk is often added as well. Muy delicioso!
- 8 cups filtered water
- 1 cup rinsed long-grain white rice
- 1 cinnamon stick for the beverage and more for garnish if desired
- 1/2 tablespoon vanilla extract
- 1/2 cup sugar
- Ground cinnamon for garnish
Blend the rice and cinnamon stick with 4 cups water until the cinnamon is coarsely ground. Pour the blend into a large bowl and add 4 more cups water; soak at room temperature for 3 hours.
Puree the mixture in a blender until smooth. Strain the blend through cheesecloth or a fine sieve into a pitcher. Stir in the sugar and vanilla, and then chill.
Stir the horchata again before serving. Pour into ice-filled glasses; garnish with cinnamon sticks and a dusting of ground cinnamon.
Chocolate is popular in Mexican dishes, or even as a dessert bar. But it’s more often consumed in the form of a hot chocolate drink. Mexican chocolate tends to be more granular and bitter than that from other countries. That makes it a perfect ingredient for a breakfast beverage. Melt the chocolate, add a bit of sugar to taste, and voila!
But you can also enjoy a great fruit drink with that fine frittata for lunch. Aqua fresca (a Mexican cooler) comes in a variety of flavors such as guava, pineapple or mango. The agua de tamarindo is a great favorite down Mexico way, made from the tamarind. For something even lighter try the agua de Jamaica made from the Hibiscus flower.
Naturally, that pre-dinner drink can quite rightly consist of a traditional margarita. Made from fine tequila and Mexican Controy, you’ll be ready for a hearty meal after one of these. If you prefer your tequila straight, that’s fine, too. Don’t forget the lime, though.
After dinner you’ll just have to have a Mexican coffee. Select some of your finest beans and brew the coffee dark. For a real taste treat, add Rompope to taste, a kind of vanilla Mexican liqueur. Or, for something a little more straightforward, just try a bit of the Rompope all on its own.