Wednesday, July 8, 2009

Bloody Mary Tomato Salad

I found this recipe in the July '09 issue of Good Housekeeping. You know, the one with the Jonas Brothers on the cover. I adapted it to make it a panzanella salad, but I think I still need to work on it. The recipe looks better than it tastes.

The original recipe calls for:

2 Tbsp prepared horseradish
2 Tbsp Olive Oil
2 Tbsp Vodka (optional)
1 Tbsp fresh Lemon juice
1-1/2 tsp hot pepper sauce
1 tsp Worcestershire sauce
Salt and pepper
3 pts grape or cherry tomatoes cut in half
4 stalks celery cut into 1/4-in thick diagonal slices
Celery leaves for garnish

Mix the first 6 ingredients (if including the vodka) into a large mixing bowl. Add tomatoes and celery. Mix to coat. Add salt and pepper to taste. Cover and refrigerate for 2 hours. toss again to coat just before serving.

Sounded simple enough. And quite a unique salad to bring to my family's July 4th party, where my uncle's famous Bloody Mary's were a-flowing. When I made it I was making a larger quantity and I ended up using 4 pints of tomatoes and whole head (?) of celery. I quadrupled the amounts for the dressing because I was adding the bread. For the bread, I used a baguette and a half of french bread, cut into medium-large sized croutons that I pan toasted in a small amount of olive oil. I added the bread in before the dressing, tossed everything together and then covered and chilled.

In theory it sounded good and I did get positive feedback from the family. But they're family; they're supposed to be positive. But in tasting the salad, I don't think it was Bloody Mary-ish enough. If you took a bite of tomatoes and bread together, you sorta good the impression of a Bloody Mary. But I think I need to add something tomatoe-y into the dressing. Tomato Paste might be an option or a 1/4 up of tomato juice or V8 ( I prefer V8). The bread will soak up the extra liquid without a problem. But I do need to toast the bread longer, regardless.

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