A Thirsty (and Thankful) Throwback Thursday

I am a HUGE sucker for a good Bloody Mary. It’s become a tradition, for several reasons, in our household, and since it’s Throwback Thursday, I’m going to tell you all about my illicit love affair with this famous lady in red.

Several years ago, I had the honor (and burden) of preparing the entire Thanksgiving day feast. I love to cook, and people seem to enjoy what I prepare, so I had no problems taking on the Turkey Day task.

Our second Thanksgiving together, and the first year I took on the task of making EVERYTHING. We had been in a horrible car accident about a month before, and I still wasn't feeling well, but that's my (now) husband making me my first good Bloody Mary, carving the turkey (when I still ate meat) and us being goofy after a very long day of entertaining.

Our second Thanksgiving together, and the first year I took on the task of making EVERYTHING. We had been in a horrible car accident about a month before, and I still wasn’t feeling well, but that’s my (now) husband making me my first good Bloody Mary, carving the turkey (when I still ate meat) and us being goofy after a very long day of entertaining.

I’m also a horrible procrastinator; I work well under pressure. I knew everything I was going to make and had my list, but as happens in life, time got away from me and we ended up doing most of the shopping the day before the big event.
I also don’t want anyone to be alone on a holiday, or feel like a “blue plate special” at Denny’s is their only option. So the guest list kept growing, right up ’till the day of.
What started as dinner for five or six, quickly ended up being 15. I’m working with a 18 pound bird, doing everything from scratch, including pie crusts and things I could have done a day or two in advance.
COULD HAVE.
But, did not.
Stressed does not begin to explain what I was feeling; one hand up a turkey’s butt while the other is dumping yams and brown sugar in the slow cooker.
I needed a drink.
Craig had been in the mood for Bloodys, but I’d never really had a good one before (just watery tomato juice and vodka), but at this point, as long as it was alcoholic and going down my gullet, I didn’t care.

Our third Thanksgiving together; again, I'm making everything from scratch at the last second. Again, we had about 15 people on the guest list.

Our third Thanksgiving together; again, I’m making everything from scratch at the last second. Again, we had about 15 people on the guest list.

And, my wonderful husband, who as I’m yanking turkey innards, rubbing butter under the turkey skin, watching potatoes boil over as I’m kneeding pie crust dough with my elbows to have my hands free, is right there behind me, drink to my lips and wiping the sweat from my brow.

Our fifth Thanksgiving, I believe. Even though someone else was making the feast, I still somehow got suckered into making the turkey at the last possible second.

Our fifth Thanksgiving, I believe. Even though someone else was making the feast, I still somehow got suckered into making the turkey and Spanakopita (a Greek, spinach pie) at the last possible second.

My love of the Bloody Mary was born.
We visited Tombstone a year or.so later (as I mentioned, we ghost hunt as a hobby), and after a long, sleepless night,found Johnny Ringo’s, who to this day, served up the best Bloody I’ve ever had. Made ingredient by ingredient to order, this is where I learned how exactly I like my Bloody.

Bloodys at South Beach Bar and Grille, Johnny Ringos and Jimmy's Famous American Tavern (counter-clockwise from top).

Bloodys at South Beach Bar and Grille, Johnny Ringos and Jimmy’s Famous American Tavern (counter-clockwise from top).

What I like, is more of a Bloody Caesar; using Calamato or clam juice. But, if you’re not Canadian or near the Northern border, asking for one will probably just get you a funny stare.
There’s also a Bloody Maria, which doubles down on the hot sauce and uses tequila instead of vodka, and Micheladas, common here in the Southwest, that use a good,Mexican beer like Sol or Tecate in place of hard liquor.
An obsession was born! It became a Thanksgiving and Christmas morning tradition, as well as a general special occasion drink.

Our Thanksgiving last year, 2014. We drove up to the mountain, split a bottle of wine and some chips and queso. When we came back down, we were starving (high elevation does that) and we ended up at a Village Inn restaurant, eating the fish and chips platters (me, because I'm pescatarian, Craig because he's supportive) and it was a great day and night! They even sent us home half a chocolate silk pie, on the house!

Our Thanksgiving last year, 2014. We drove up to the mountain, split a bottle of wine and some chips and queso. When we came back down, we were starving (high elevation does that) and we ended up at a Village Inn restaurant, eating the fish and chips platters (me, because I’m pescatarian, Craig because he’s supportive) and it was a great day and night! They even sent us home with a chocolate silk pie, on the house!

Where we chilled our wine (in an ice Cole stream, under that bridge, and my must have popcorn whenever we go up the mountain. Thankfully, the Ski Shop was open! Their popcorn is the best!

Where we chilled our wine (in an ice cold stream, under that bridge), and my must have popcorn whenever we go up the mountain. Thankfully, the Ski Shop was open! Their popcorn is the best!

Okay, so on to the good stuff – the booze!

As I mentioned in a recent blog (California Dreamin’ ), when we got married in San Diego, I was craving Bloodys. South Beach Bar and Grille had my order down, the day before we left! Its our favorite restaurant whenever we’re in San Diego. Jimmy’s Famous American Tavern has a pretty good one, but it’s more of a Bloody Maria, with tequila, and they don’t add much (if any) Worcestershire sauce, which is sinful in my opinion. Andrew Zimmern’s recipe is the closest I can find to exactly how I like mine.
I really want to try either this spicy or pickle flavored vodka , in place of my usual plain.

How do you garnish a Bloody? This is way too much for me!

How do you garnish a Bloody? This is way too much for me!

Garnishes are getting out of hand, though. I’m an olive, especially stuffed, and citrus gal, although I might try something pickled, like okra or a Bloody Pickle sometime.

Yes, ladies and gents, that is an entire chicken garnishing a Bloody.

Yes, ladies and gents, that is an entire chicken garnishing a Bloody.

Think I’m crazy? Check out some of these garnishes, that could take the place of breakfast, second breakfast, brunch, lunch, liner,diner,midnight snack and fourth meal.

The rim? Eh. I’m not a fan of celery salt, but Bloody Mary Salt, which would be great on steak or seafood too, or Old Bay Seasoning , which is my all purpose season all salt, are my favorite ways to go. And, of course, fresh, cracked black pepper is a must.

Very basic graphic I did. Add or subtract what you like.

Very basic graphic I did. Add or subtract what you like.

I must have Worcestershire sauce in my Bloody, preferably to the point it resembles the color of week old menstrual blood. If you’re not going to buy the best, try making your own. Add some of that Bloody Mary Salt and a jar of olives, and you have a cute DIY gift for a friend, hostess or holiday.
Of course, you can get kettle potato chips and flavored nuts to to along with this next idea.

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Throw a DIY Bloody Mary party or add a DIY Bloody bar to a brunch or shower. Add some Bloody Mary Jello shots (you can get vegan gelatin, by the way), and try some of these things to do with leftover Bloody Mary mix, like ice cubes and the goat cheese appetizer.

Meat stick straws, for those who partake, would make a fantastic garnish, I'm sure!

Meat stick straws, for those who partake, would make a fantastic garnish, I’m sure!


Bloody Mary bread, Bloody Mary Chipotle shrimp, or these 5 other ways to eat your Bloody Mary, might be a hit as well.

We're all about Tabasco in our house. We had them made with Sriracha awhile back, and it's just not the same.

We’re all about Tabasco in our house. We had them made with Sriracha awhile back, and it’s just not the same.

Not sure I’m brave enough to try a peanut butter Bloody Mary, but celebrity Iron Chef Jose Garces has come up with some delicious sounding regional takes on the traditional Bloody, that I’d be down for – the ‘Gotham Mary’, inspired by a NYC Everything bagel, ‘Fisherman’s Blood’, with malt vinegar which I’m a huge sucker for and ‘Al Fresca Mary’, with balsamic and pepperoncinnis, to name a few.

What’s your favorite cocktail? Or, your favorite Turkey Day memory? Let us know!
And, in case you missed it, here’s last week’s Throwback Thursday,, where I wax poetic about concerts and state/county fairs!

Images:pinterest, oola, foodbeast, pastemagazine, cracked,gapersblock, buzzfeed, personal.

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