Extremely popular in Spain and Mexico, horchatas are drinks made by steeping nuts, grains or chufa in water. They're usually lightly sweetened with sugar and sometimes spiced with cinnamon. Horchatas are generally served cold or at room temperature. They come in a wide variety of flavors. Horchata de arroz is made with rice, horchata de almendras with almonds, and the famous is, of course, made with chufa. Horchatas may be purchased in Latin markets.
From The Food Lover's Companion, Fourth edition by Sharon Tyler Herbst and Ron Herbst. Copyright © 2007, 2001, 1995, 1990 by Barron's Educational Series, Inc.