Comida Latina, Dairy Free, Drinks, Recipes

Fresh Tomato Michelada with Tamarind

October 11, 2013
It is mid-October and the most extraordinary thing is happening. I still have tomatoes! And not just a few spindly ones hanging off a dried-out, freezer-burnt vine, but gobs and gobs of them growing like they missed the memo that August has come and gone.

This has been the most incredible tomato year in history. I’ve never had such a bumper crop and if the weather cooperates I could possibly have tomatoes through Thanksgiving—move over turkey, we’re having ratatouille this year.

Because of the beautiful bounty I’ve been making mason jar after mason jar of fresh tomato juice. It gives you the kind of pick up in the afternoon that I think the makers of Emergen-C were going for but never quite nailed. It is the kind of pick me up I always wish I will get from that slice of banana bread and cup of coffee I generally desire around 3pm, which inevitably make me feel nothing, except hungry for more banana bread.

With all this tomato juice floating around it dawned on me that I should also be making pitcher after pitcher of Micheladas, that sensational beer cocktail from our genius friends in Mexico. There are many ways to make a Michelada, but I tend to go with convention, so the best way is to make a big pitcher like the street vendors do with tons of lime, a little tamarind, and equal parts of very cold tomato juice and beer.

Fresh Tomato Micheladas with Tamarind

Tamarind paste lends this delicate sour note which makes the drink incredibly refreshing. You can find it in Mexican or Asian markets. It is very sticky however so it needs to be mashed into the lime juice to loosen it up otherwise you’ll just have this blob of tamarind floating into someone’s drink….not nice.

Fresh Tomato Michelada with Tamarind

 Then add the Worcestershire sauce (or go very authentic and use Maggi) as much hot sauce as you like and then the very cold tomato juice and very cold beer. (I gave my recipe for fresh tomato juice here. Normally I like it with plenty of pulp straight from the juicer, but I like a light, refreshing Michelada so I did run the juice through a fine mesh sieve before using it in the cocktail.)

Rim the glasses with a chile-salt mixture and serve the cocktail with plenty of ice and a lime wedge.

Fresh Tomato Micheladas with Tamarind

Fresh Tomato Michelada with Tamarind

Yield: 4


  • Juice from 1/2 a lime (about 1/2 ounce)
  • 1 teaspoon tamarind paste
  • 1 teaspoon Worcestershire sauce
  • 3-4 drops hot sauce (or to taste)
  • 12 ounces cold fresh tomato juice (or bottled)
  • 12 ounces cold beer
  • salt, ground cayenne pepper, lime wedges, and ice to serve


  1. In a large pitcher combine lime juice and tamarind paste. With the back of a long wooden spoon mash the tamarind into the lime juice until it is smooth (remove any pits). Add Worcestershire, hot sauce, tomato juice, and beer and stir to combine.
  2. Combine a generous spoonful of salt with a pinch of cayenne on a small plate. Run a lime wedge around the rim of 4 highball glasses. Tap the top of each glass in the salt mixture until evenly covered. Fill glasses with ice and divide Michelada between the glasses. Place a lime wedge in each glass and serve.

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  • aida mollenakmp October 11, 2013 at 8:06 pm

    Woah, this sounds seriously awesome! And what kind of weather are you guys having that you still have tomatoes in Oct?

    • Kate Ramos October 13, 2013 at 1:29 pm

      We’ve had an amazing fall. It has been so warm and beautiful, I’m praying it will continue at least through Halloween!