July was National Pickle Month. Which can only mean one thing: cocktail time (bear with me here).
Now, I’m all for pickled produce – especially as I’m a great believer in avoiding food waste at all costs. In wartime, housewives were encouraged to make the most of a glut of home-grown veg to make delicious chutneys and pickles to liven up their rations. That kind of history makes me fond of any foodstuff.
As a nation, we’ve come up with some pretty classic pickled preserves. Beetroot, gherkins, onions and piccalilli all spring to mind, as well as seaside favourites like mussels, rollmops and cockles. Let’s just gloss over pickled eggs at this point.
But despite it all, there’s no denying that some pickled offerings really are, shall we say, an acquired taste. Step forward the alcohol.
Yes, for me there’s only one way to mark National Pickle Month this weekend – a Bloody Mary. Pickle juice (whether from a jar of olives or dill cucumbers) isn’t always added, but for me it’s inclusion marks out a truly special Bloody Mary. Invite some friends over, and impress them with this cheeky ensemble:
In a blender combine the tomato juice, lemon juice, lime juice, horseradish, Worcestershire sauce, garlic powder, pickle juice, and hot sauce and process until smooth. Transfer to a glass jug and add celery salt and black pepper, to taste. Refrigerate until thoroughly chilled, at least 2 hours and up to overnight.
When ready to serve, fill each glass with ice.
Add 1 ounce of vodka to each glass, then fill the glass with the Bloody Mary mix. Stir well, and garnish each glass an olive.