Thanks to this year’s garden, we’ve enjoyed scrumptious meals of tomatoes and mozzarella, BLTs, bread salad, pasta with fresh sauce, and huge heirloom tomatoes, simply sliced with flaky salt. But eight tomato plants may be too many for one family. What else to do with the handfuls of tomatoes I harvest every day?
Salsa. Maybe. Sauce. Nah, not in the mood to freeze or can. Enter Kate’s gorgeous tomato photo and the magic words she posted as a caption: bloody mary mix. YES! I never even thought of making tomato juice before. How silly. Let me just say, homemade is like nothing you can buy at the store. Thanks to Elise from Simply Recipes for the basics on the juice.
Now. On to the bloody mary part. My go-to is from the Silver Palate cookbook and involves: lemon juice, horseradish, and a few shakes of worcestershire. And vodka and ice. And a celery sticks. Over ice, like this:
- 3 pounds fresh tomatoes
- 1 ¼ cups chopped celery
- 1/3 cup chopped yellow onion
- 1 Tbsp. sugar
- 1 tsp. salt
- a few grinds of black pepper
- 1 ½ cups tomato juice
- juice from 1 lemon
- 1 Tbsp. prepared horseradish
- several hefty dashes of Worcestershire sauce
- several hefty dashes of Tabasco
- ½ cup vodka
- Roughly chop the tomatoes and put them in a non-reactive (not aluminum) saucepan. Add the chopped celery and onion, sugar, salt, and black pepper and bring to a boil. Reduce heat and simmer uncovered 25 minutes. Remove from heat and let cool.
- Send the cooked tomato mixture through a food mill or other sieve to strain out seeds and pulp. Store in a glass jar in the refrigerator for up to a week.
- Combine tomato juice, lemon juice, horseradish, Worcestershire, Tabasco in a glass measuring cup or pitcher. Serve over ice in tall glasses with a celery stick garnish.