Colombian Tomato & Onion Sauce


5 Plum Tomatoes, peeled & finely diced (check this post out on how to peel tomatoes)
3 Large or 4 Small Scallions, finely sliced
1 Whole Onion, finely diced
2 Garlic Cloves, minced
1/2 Red Bell Pepper, seeds removed & finely diced
1/4 Tsp Saffron or 2 Tbsp Achiote/Annatto Oil (this is for color)
Salt, Pepper, & Cumin, to taste
2 Tbsp Canola Oil (if using Achiote/Annatto Oil, don’t add this)
2 Tbsp Butter


1. If using saffron, mix it with 2 Tbsp of water in a small bowl/ramekin and set aside. To extract color.
2. Bring heat to medium and add in either the Achiote/Annatto oil or Canola oil in a small-medium size sauce pot.
3. Add all ingredients except the saffron water mixture, salt, pepper, and cumin. Saute for 2 minutes.
4. Then add in the saffron water (if using), salt, pepper, and cumin. Stir and cook for 20 minutes or until the sauce looks liquidy, the vegetables are very tender.
You can keep the hogao for up to a week in the refrigerator in an airtight container.
If you want a bit of spice to it, go ahead and add in your favorite pepper or ground spices.


In Colombia this sauce is used in a variety different ways. It’s eaten as a condiment with fried foods such as plantains or empanadas. For an easy simple lunch/dinner you can serve this on top of some plain rice, on top of meat, pork, or even chicken. You’ll see this sauce everywhere in Colombia! It has an Italian inspiration to it. But what makes it different from your typical Italian tomato sauce is that it’s cooked with 2 different types of onions and the spice that shines is cumin. Every family has their own way of making hogao and I present to you the way I make it, from tasting my grandmothers and trying different ways they do it in Colombia. Hogao: Easy, delicious, and great on everything!

Other Names:



2 Cups


Monday, February 13, 2012 - 8:18am

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