Happy Wednesday! This week’s cocktail is the spicy Bloody Mary. Long before I started enjoying Bloody Marys at boozy brunches with friends, my Dad was perfecting the Bloody Mary at home. His Bloody Marys were never made from a recipe, like most great bartenders, he made them by taste alone. And they were delicious. Always made in a pitcher, he mixed Clamato, Worcestershire, salt, pepper, lemon, limes, celery salt, fresh horseradish, Tabasco and his secret ingredient Crazy Jane’s Mixed-Up Salt.
Photo: Michael Kraus via Saveur
Over the years, I’ve tried to master and add a twist to my Dad’s recipe, tasting different variations all over the county. No Bloody Mary is complete without Old Bay rimmed glasses in Maryland and spicy pickled okra and beans in New Orleans. Pickle spears are a delicious garnish in Minneapolis while crispy bacon strips won me over in Arizona.
It’s a fact that everyone likes their Bloody Mary a little bit different. When preparing a Bloody Mary for someone else, I find myself always asking three questions 1. Do you like it spicy? 2. Are you a fan of horseradish? 3. How much vodka? A better solution to this is to build a Bloody Mary bar.
Vodka: Tito’s | Absolute | Grey Goose | Kettle One | or add Tequila for a twist
Mixes: (A purist at heart, I prefer straight tomato juice, but mixes will work in a pinch…)
Zing Zang | Fat & Juicy | V-8 | Clamato
To Mix In:
Worcestershire | Steak Sauce (A-1) | Fresh Horseradish | A mix of hot sauces (Tabasco, Franks Red Hot, Tapatio, Cholula, Sriracha) | Crazy Jane’s Mixed Up Salt | Salt & Pepper
Lemons | Limes | Celery| Pickle Spears | Pickled Green Beans and Okra | Olives | Bacon Strips | Pearl Onions| Old Bay | Salt & Pepper | Banana Peppers | Pepperoncini | Boiled Shrimp
My chef friend, Joe gave me a delicious recipe for pickled green beans. They’re tangy, spicy, sweet and simple to make. Trust me, you’ll like them. Enjoy! – Liz