Hogao del Caribe o Guiso

Tomato and Onion Seasoning Sauce

Rate this recipe

Preparation info

  • 1½ cups

    • Difficulty


Appears in

Secrets of Colombian Cooking

Secrets of Colombian Cooking

By Patricia McCausland-Gallo

Published 2004

  • About

In Colombia, we use this sauce to flavor many of our typical dishes. It is sometimes called hogao, mainly by people from the Andean regions, and guiso by the rest. You can use it as a finished sauce for potatoes, yuca* or cassava, and meats and poultry as well as an ingredient during preparation. It differs from the Hogao del Pacífico mainly in the kind of onion used; this one uses scallions and the other green onions. Also, this one uses ají dulce* (sweet green peppers) and has other small variations; but you can use them interchangeably. This is a sweeter sauce with a less oily consistency. You can keep it refrigerated in jars for up to two weeks.


  • 4 tablespoons olive oil
  • cups diced onion
  • 1 cup peeled and diced tomatoes, seeds included
  • 4 cloves garlic, mashed
  • 2 tablespoons minced ají dulce* (sweet green pepper)
  • 2 bay leaves
  • tablespoons chopped cilantro
  • 1 tablespoon chopped scallion
  • 1 tablespoon Worcestershire sauce
  • 2 tablespoons red wine vinegar (optional)
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • ½ teaspoon sugar
  • ¼ teaspoon pepper


  1. In a large sauté pan, heat the oil over medium heat. Add the onions and cook for 2 to 3 minutes.
  2. Add the tomatoes, garlic, sweet peppers, bay leaves, cilantro, scallion, Worcestershire, vinegar (if using), salt, sugar, and pepper, and cook for 6 minutes more.
  3. Remove bay leaves.
  4. You should have a very soft and moist consistency, almost like a sauce. If the heat is high, and your sauce looks dry like a sofritto, then add some beef stock or water, about ½ cup.

Serve the sauce with meats, chicken, potatoes, and yuca. It gives a zest of flavor to many foods.