I mean if there was every a day to need a bloody mary in your tomato salad, it’s Monday.
I’ve more than documented by tumultuous relationship with bloody marys over the years. Growing up absolutely loathing anything tomato-sauce pasta (except pizza, riddle me that), they were never a cocktail I even dreamed about as I neared 21.
And then through my 20s, I would see friends and family order them and they looked SO good and came complete with so many accruements. Much like my distaste for coffee, I WANTED to like bloody marys. Mostly for the snacks on top.
Let’s be real, bloody marys in the last ten years have come a loooonnng way. They come with things like lobster mac, fried green tomatoes and jalapeno poppers. Hello?!
Still, I’d order one, take a sip and not even be able to finish it!
Once I was pregnant with Max, my tastebuds changed and I started enjoying tomato sauce laced meals – almost actually craving them.
And this! This is when I saw my chance with a bloody mary.
Part of the reason I never jived with the bloody mary is because I’m just so… “meh” when it comes to vodka. I do love tequila though, so I started loving bloody maria’s made with tequila instead of vodka. That’s how I ended up with a twisted bacon bloody maria in The Pretty Dish.
When I first considered a bloody mary tomato salad (it sounded SO good in my brain!), I feared I’d have to put vodka or tequila IN THE DRESSING. Um, can you imagine?
Maybe I could with a heartier salad, but no. Not just on tomatoes. No way!
Luckily, this salad has all the flavor and contains everything except the vodka or tequila.
Well, and the celery, because I’d rather do, uh… basically anything than consume celery.
I like celery salt, so there’s that! And I don’t mind the celery leaves either, so you’ll find them here too.
And if you don’t share my distaste, celery would make the perfect addition here!
But really, celery is still the worst.
The rest of the bowl contains:
Tons of green olives, because I could eat an entire bowl of them alone.
An amazing dressing full of sherry vinegar (!!), horseradish and hot sauce.
And lots of sharp cheddar cheese crisps.
YES. Sharp cheddar cheese crisps. I die.
Instead of making parmesan crisps, we make cheddar crisps. Use them as crisp croutons, use them to scoop up your salad, you use as a crunchy, cheesy side dish. You seriously may not be able to stop.
Even if you’re not one to love a bloody mary, you may be super into this salad. I know that for me, the only deciding factor in that cocktail is the actual tomato juice. Instead of the juice here, we use fresh, sweet tomatoes and they more than make up for it.
Okay!! So I know I’ve been pretty heavy on salads here for a few weeks but I really wanted to share everything I had in my back pocket before the middle of summer. Now that we’re equipped, bring on allll the summer dinners. And cocktails. And ice cream?
Bloody Mary Tomato Salad
Yield: 2 to 4 people
This bloody mary tomato salad has all the incredible flavor of the bloody mary cocktail! Topped with cheddar crisps, it’s delicious!
- 6 ounces sharp white cheddar cheese finely grated
- 2 heirloom tomatoes cut into pieces
- 2 campari tomatoes halved
- 1 cup cherry tomatoes halved
- ½ cup green olives halved
- 1/3 cup chopped celery leaves
- 4 tablespoons sherry vinegar
- 1 shallot diced
- 1 garlic clove minced
- 1 tablespoon prepared horseradish
- 2 teaspoons honey
- 1 teaspoon Worcestershire sauce
- 1 teaspoon hot sauce
- ½ teaspoon Dijon mustard
- ½ teaspoon celery seeds
- 1/3 cup extra virgin olive oil
Preheat the oven to 400 degrees Line a baking sheet with parchment paper.
Grate the cheddar as finely as you can. Take 1 tablespoon of the grated cheddar and place it in a pile on the baking sheet. Repeat with remaining cheddar, making sure the piles are 1 ½ to 2 inches apart.
Bake the crisps for 5 to 6 minutes, or until they are melted and golden on the edges. Remove and let cool completely. Peel the crisp off the parchment or use a spatula to lift them up.
Place the tomatoes in a bowl and season them with a pinch of salt and pepper. Toss well. Add in the olives. Drizzle on a few tablespoons of the dressing and toss. Taste and add more dressing as needed. Top with the celery leaves and the cheddar crisps or serve them on the side.
This stays great in the fridge (minus the crisps, store those separatelfor a day or so!
In a bowl, whisk together the vinegar, shallot, garlic, horseradish, Worcestershire, honey, hot sauce, mustard and celery seeds. Stream in the olive oil while whisking constantly until the dressing emulsifies. I like to let the dressing sit for 15 minutes before using it.
Seriously nothing better.