Recipe: Sangrita, A Chaser for Tequila or Mezcal

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Yes, yes, I know. Many sangritas are not tomato based. It might even be true that the best ones have no tomatoes. I once told some fellow gringo travelers how I was planning on making a sangrita from the "mature" tomatoes I didn't sell at the farmers market and they looked at me in horror: Sangrita has no tomatoes! Of course, every sangrita I had after that was tomato-based. And delicious.

On Sunday I had friends over and with Sunday being Sunday, I was running late. No time to make an authentic or unauthentic sangrita! So I cheated and took a 2 quart jar of tomato juice and added an entire bottle of Rio Fuego Very Hot Sauce, and the juice of one lime and mixed it together and served it as sangrita with our tequila shots. I'll be honest, it couldn't have been better, but next time I may try adding the juice of an orange as well.

For a different kick, try Gay Caballero or Felicidad. For all the flavor and none of the pain, La Paloma is your sauce.