The neighborhood pool is open. Your grill is fired up. And I’ve rolled my Slip ‘N Slide Double Wave Rider out on the front lawn.
Summer has officially arrived.
Which can only mean one thing: you’re going to need something a little more interesting than a box of wine or basket of weenies to bring to the next picnic, potluck or pool party. Allow me to humbly suggest trying a Sangrita Layer Cake with Citrus Meringue Frosting and Agave Crunch on for size.
In case you’ve never tried it, sangrita is not to be confused with sangria. They’re both fruity and they both start with an ‘s’ and end in an ‘a’, but the similarities end there.
Traditional sangrita preparations are designed to be a non-alcoholic compliment to a straight shot of tequila blanco. While there are many recipes for sangrita floating around out there, most include a base of sweet citrus juices paired with ground chiles or hot sauce for heat. Variations can include pomegranate juice, mango juice, cucumber and even fresh chiles.
Much modern sangrita is made with tomato juice and, although purists may turn their nose insisting that the red color of the drink should come from freshly ground chile powder instead of tomato juice, I personally prefer the tomato juice variation and I’m sticking with it.
This layer cake is based on a modern sip of sangrita. Don’t freak out about the tomato – I’ll hold your hand and talk you through it.
The thing about tomatoes is that they actually are really sweet, especially in the summer. Don’t you agree?
And when you pair them with fresh, sweet citrus juices and, you know, put some frosting on top, there’s really nothing to be scared of.
The naturally bright orange color hiding underneath the glossy white frosting is a bonus.