Bloody Kim

Tomato time on the farm is supposed to be winding down, and I still find myself buried in tomatoes!  I have made 30 quarts of roasted tomato sauce, 12 quarts of tomato stock, 6 quarts of roasted cherry tomato soup, several half pints of puttanesca relish, not to mention endless fresh sauce, salads and BLT’s.  I wait impatiently each year for the taste of our homegrown tomatoes and although slightly weary, I refused to let any of these delicious gems go to waste!   Solution: Bloody Mary’s!!

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I hadn’t even considered making homemade tomato juice before, so why not double dip and do both juice and Bloody Mary Mix?  We have a customer at the farmers market that always brings us a pint of his pickled Brussels sprouts and now I could return the favor by giving him something tasty to put them in!

So let’s start by recommending an inexpensive tomato juicer food mill.  We use the CucinaPro which runs about $30 and is well worth the investment.  It allows you to separate the pulp and juice from the skin and seeds, combining several steps.  You simply attach it to your counter top, cut your tomatoes in manageable pieces and turn the crank. The pulp and juice go into one container, while the skin and seeds go into another.  What could be easier?  In the end, I split the end product by canning half the juice for its own delicious self and adding the additions for the mix, then canning those. After all, at our farm there are two times of the day that are sacrosanct: coffee hour and cocktail hour!

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INGREDIENTS:

  • 1/2 bushel of tomatoes (half paste or Roma and 1/2 regular)
  • 1 teaspoon of salt for each quart of juice

DIRECTIONS:

  1. Core and cut the tomatoes into manageable pieces and place in the hopper.  Turn the crank to separate the pulp and juice from the skin and seeds.  I fill the hopper twice, then put the juice in a large stock pot and the skin and seeds in a wire strainer set over a bowl.  Press down on these with a spatula, making sure you also scrape the outside of the strainer with the spatula for the accumulated pulp.  Doing this extra step yielded an additional two quarts of juice!
  2. Bring juice to a rolling boil over medium high heat, stirring frequently so it doesn’t burn.
  3. Add 1 teaspoon salt to each sterilized quart jar.  Ladle hot juice into each quart leaving 1/2 inch head space.
  4. Place quarts into water bath canner and process for 25 minutes.

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INGREDIENTS FOR BLOODY MARY MIX (PER QUART JAR):

  • 1 1/2 ounces fresh lemon juice
  • 1 1/2 ounces fresh lime juice
  • 1 tablespoon Worcestershire sauce
  • 2 teaspoon ground horseradish
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons salt (I use Maldon)
  • 1 teaspoon hot sauce (I use Cholula)
  • 1 teaspoon celery salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
  • 3 cups homemade tomato juice

DIRECTIONS:

  1. Place all ingredients except tomato juice in sterilized quart jar and mix thoroughly.
  2. Ladle hot tomato juice into jar leaving 1/2 inch head space.
  3. Process in water bath for 25 minutes.

FOR SERVING:

  • Pint canning jar or glass of your choice
  • Ice
  • 2 ounces vodka
  • Garnish with any of the following:  pickled Brussels sprouts, salami, olives, celery, cubes of cheese or dill pickle spears

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 “A world without tomatoes, is like a string quartet without violins.”

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