Phuket, it’s Sunday Morning!
Build in a 16 oz. pint glass filled with large ice cubes. Pour into chilled 16 oz. pint glass and serve.
Garnish with a lime wheel and sprig of basil.
My daughter’s favorite thing about summer is camp. Mine is the well-stocked farm stand I pass on the way to pick her up from camp. On Monday, I stopped by to re-up on peaches, and my eyes fell upon a cardboard box brimming with heirloom tomatoes labeled, “10 pounds heirloom tomato seconds – $10.” I moved toward the box, started to pick it up, then shook my head.
“Don’t do it,” I told myself, “You’ll end up throwing half of them away.”
I broke eye contact and made my way to the peaches and sweet corn. I tried not to think about the box, but the thought of it followed me around, tugging at the hem of my dress. When I realized I was going to need tomatoes for that night’s salad and saw the $3.99/pound price, I gave in. Shoving the box into the hatchback, I made a silent vow, “I will use every last one of these tomatoes.”
After dinner, I made the Grated Tomato Sauce from last month’s bon appetit. I felt pretty good about myself, but I still had half the box left, and it was past midnight.
Tuesday night I added shrimp and fresh pasta to the grated tomato sauce, which was delicious.
By Wednesday, the remaining tomatoes had reached the point of no return. I either used them that night or threw them away. The idea of a Thai bloody mary had been cavorting in the recesses of my brain for a while, so I figured it was time.
I peeled and seeded the tomatoes, trimming any moldy bits, and threw them into my Vitamix with benchmark Thai ingredients: bird’s eye chiles, fish sauce, fresh ginger and lime, kaffir lime leaves, basil and sriracha sauce. My goal was for the mix to be spicy, but still approachable, so I added the chiles one at a time until I detected a decent amount of heat. Three did it for me, but I’m a bit of a lightweight. Unless you really know your crowd, I suggest leaving it at three and amping up the spice by adding more Sriracha to individual drinks.
My Thai bloody mary mix is delicious on it’s own, but, Phuket, it’s Sunday Morning! Throw in 2 shots of vodka, toss it with ice, and serve it in a chilled pint glass with a lime and basil garnish. And, in case you’re wondering, yes, I know it’s pronounced, “poo-ket,” but, c’mon, I just finished a 10-pound box of heirloom tomatoes in three days. Don’t spoil my fun.
Thai Bloody Mary Mix Recipe:
5 lbs heirloom tomatoes, skin and seeds removed and juice retained
6 dried kaffir lime leaves [rehydrated in warm water for 20 minutes]
3 Thai bird’s eye chiles, seeded and deveined [Wear disposable gloves, if possible.]
1/3 cup (packed) basil leaves
2.5 oz Golden Boy Fish Sauce
2-inch piece of peeled ginger
1 tbs. palm sugar
1 tbs. Sriracha Sauce
Start by bringing a large pot of water to a boil. Next, place the first six ingredients into a high-powered blender such as a Vitamix (all hail!).
Remove the skins from tomatoes by slicing a shallow X into the bottoms, then placing them into boiling water until the skin starts to wrinkle (about 60 seconds). Transfer to a bowl of ice water, then slip the skins off. Next, remove the core then deseed the tomatoes over a large cookie sheet by making slices from stem to base about 3/4 inch apart around the circumference of each tomato and scraping out the seeds as you go. When finished, put each tomato into the blender.
Once all of the tomatoes have been deseeded, place a fine mesh strainer over a bowl and strain the juice out of everything that’s collected on the cookie sheet. Pour the juice into the blender.
Next, purée all of the ingredients until smooth. Transfer to a pitcher and stir in 1 cup of water.
Makes approximately 10 cups.