I recently rediscovered the Bloody Mary at brunch a few weeks ago. The reason I abandoned this wonderful drink was due to all the poor tasting versions I had over the the years. You can only drink watered down tomato juice with a splash of vodka so many times before giving up. The Bloody Mary I drank a few weeks ago was something completely different. It had the best quaility ingredients and as we know that can make all the difference!! So I set out on the happy task of making my own bloody mary mix and then to make it extra special I added a candied strip of bacon to stir the cocktail. The mix is peppery with from the fresh horseradish, with some heat from the cayenne and a freshness thanks to all that lemon juice. Make sure the Bloody Mary is icy cold to really enjoy all the flavors. Dipping that sweet crispy candied bacon into the cold spicy Bloody Mary and taking a bite really is heaven! I suggest a pitcher for your next lazy weekend!!
From by the bay, wishing you Bloody Mary food memories and don’t forget the bacon!
Bloody Mary Mix with Candied Bacon
Makes approximately 32 ounces of mix
- 1 (25-ounce) jar tomato passata, preferably San Marzano or best quality tomato juice
- 3 tablespoons freshly grated horseradish or best quality prepared grated horseradish
- 1/2 cup fresh lemon juice from 4 to 5 lemons
- 3 celery stalks, cut into 1 inch pieces
- 1/2 cup water
- 1 tablespoon white vinegar
- 1 teaspoon balsamic vinegar
- 1 teaspoon fine grey sea salt
- 1 teaspoon celery salt
- 1 1/2 teaspoons fresh ground black pepper
- 1/8 teaspoon cayenne pepper
- 8 slices bacon, 1/4 inch thick, best quality
- 1/4 cup dark brown sugar
Place tomato passata in a bowl. In a food processor add the celery and 1/4 cup water and blend. Strain liquid into a cup. You should have about 1/4 cup liquid. Discard the solids and add the celery infused water to the tomatoes. To the tomato base add horseradish, lemon juice, remaining 1/4 cup water, vinegars, salt, 1/2 teaspoon black pepper and cayenne. Refrigerate until ready to use. About an hour before serving preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper. Place bacon, brown sugar and 1 teaspoon black pepper in a bowl. Mix well. Place slices bacon flat onto the parchment paper. Sprinkle any remaining sugar on the bacon. Cover bacon with a second sheet of parchment. Place a second baking sheet on top of the parchment. This will keep the bacon flat while cooking. Place in the oven and bake for 20 minutes, remove top baking sheet and parchment paper and let continue to bake another 10 minutes or until crispy and a dark brown color. Remove from oven and place on rack to cool immediately.
To make Bloody Mary:
Take 3 parts bloody mary mix to 1 part vodka. Mix well. Serve chilled or over ice. Place a slice of candied bacon into each bloody mary just as you serve.