Cocktails & liqueurs

Fresh tomato Bloody Mary with garden herbs and celery bitters

If you’ve never had a Bloody Mary made with fresh tomatoes, you’re in for a treat. It makes a lighter, more delicate and yet unbelievably flavorful libation.

Here the fresh tomatoes are puréed with four different fresh herbs: basil, oregano, thyme and parsley. The herbs infuse with the fresh juice for 20 minutes before being strained – time enough to impart their ambrosial perfume to the tomato juice.

On a side note, ground black pepper is truly the spice of choice for this drink. It brings a spicy-kick without overpowering the delicate flavors of the herbs. So go easy on the Tabasco, but let your black pepper mill run free!

This is not just another Bloody Mary; it’s a refined cocktail – you’ll want to savor every sip.

Heirloom tomatoes

Fresh tomato Bloody Mary with garden herbs and celery bitters

serves 2
active time: 15 min

For the tomato juice with fresh herbs

  1. 1 1/4 lbs (565 g) vine-ripened tomatoes (3 medium) – unpeeled and quartered
  2. 12 large basil leaves
  3. 1 sprig oregano
  4. 6 sprigs thyme
  5. 4 sprigs Italian parsley
  6. 1/2 teaspoon sea salt
  7. lots of freshly ground black pepper

For the cocktail

  1. 6 oz (175 ml) Tomato Juice with Fresh Herbs (see Step 1 and 2)
  2. 4 1/2 oz (133 ml) vodka
  3. 1 oz (30 ml) lemon juice
  4. 2 dashes Tabasco
  5. 2 dashes angostura bitters
  6. 2 dashes celery bitters
  1. celery leaves as garnish

  1. Step 1: To make the tomato juice – Place the tomato pieces, basil, oregano, thyme, parsley, salt and pepper in the bowl of a food processor. Pulse until finely chopped. Scrape the sides of the bowl. Then process until puréed, about 20 seconds. Do not over-process or the tomato purée will become lighter in color and yield a less-attractive cocktail. Transfer to a bowl and let stand at room temperature for 20 minutes so the flavors develop.
  2. Step 2: Transfer to a fine sieve suspended over a bowl. With a silicone spatula, stir the purée until all the juice has been strained and only the pulp, coarse herbs and seeds are left behind. You should have 1 1/2 cups (12 oz) (355 ml) of juice – enough to make 4 cocktails. Transfer juice into a squeeze bottle and refrigerate until ready to use, up to 24 hours.
  3. Step 3: To make the cocktail – Shake the tomato juice, vodka, lemon juice, Tabasco, angostura bitters and celery bitters with ice cubes until a thin layer of frost appears on the outside of the shaker. Pour into cocktail glasses, garnish with a celery leaf and serve ice cold.

cocktail, bloody mary, celery bitters

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11 Comments

  • Reply Sandi September 9, 2011 at 12:43 pm

    Love the fresh tomatoes!

  • Reply Eating Deliciously September 9, 2011 at 1:19 pm

    I’ve never heard of celery bitters before but I can’t wait to find them and make this cocktail. Yum!

  • Reply Amy September 9, 2011 at 10:35 pm

    Yum! I need to make a bloody mary soon, my counter is over run with tomatoes! Yours sounds delcious!

  • Reply Kimberly (unrivaledkitch) September 10, 2011 at 1:55 pm

    my favorite cocktail made even better. I’ll have to make these for brunch next week! lovely

  • Reply Janso September 12, 2011 at 1:14 pm

    I now know what to do with my last tomatoes of the season. Thanks for the recipe.

  • Reply Viviane September 14, 2011 at 4:27 pm

    Thank you for your wonderful comments everyone! Four weeks left before local tomato season is over here on the East Coast, but who’s counting… Cheers!

  • Reply Rajesh September 14, 2011 at 5:32 pm

    Oh, wow! That looks so enticing. I want to make it right away.

  • Reply Donna Ford September 18, 2011 at 11:52 pm

    Viviane, I’m ready for a treat! It looks delicious, thank you for the recipe!

  • Reply Balvinder August 28, 2012 at 11:31 am

    Ooooh, I want one right now! Sounds so good with fresh tomatoes and herbs.

    • Reply Viviane August 28, 2012 at 3:24 pm

      I’m with you Balvinder… Cheers!

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