DIY: Bloody Mary Bar

Hair of the dog, amuse bouche, liquid lunch. Call it what you will, but one thing’s for certain: no brunch is complete without a Bloody Mary.

In fact, there’s really no better way to celebrate the myriad possibilities of brunch than with this deep red beverage. At Buttermilk Channel in Brooklyn, we know a thing or two about serving the hungover masses – so we know all about Bloody Marys.

Every day we serve a bevy of tomato-spiked cocktails with house-infused vodkas and artisan garnishes served alongside. The list of Bloody Mary combos goes on and on. While high-brow additions like antipasti and oysters are always a nice touch, we get that they’re unlikely in a last-minute brunch situation. That’s OK. You needn’t look further than your corner bodega to build a great Bloody Mary and take your brunch to the next level.

The Basics

A jar of pickles

A bottle each of a potato vodka, dry gin and golden tequila (so that your guests have options)

The Mix

Makes about 1 pitcher.

One 16-ounce can tomato juice
1 cup horseradish, plus more to taste
1⁄8 cup celery salt
1⁄8 cup ground black pepper
1⁄4 cup Worcestershire sauce
20 dashes Tabasco
‣ Lemon juice, to taste
‣ Salt, to taste

The Garnishes

Lemon-Celery Salt: Zest the rind of 2 small lemons into a half cup of kosher salt and 1 tablespoon celery salt. Mix well and serve in a shallow bowl.

Lime Salt: Zest the rind of 2 limes into a half cup of kosher salt. Mix well and serve in a shallow bowl.

Potato Chip “Salt and Pepper”: Place 3 heaping handfuls of potato chips into a separate plastic bag with 1 tablespoon of black pepper. Crunch until contents are fine. Taste, and add more pepper if necessary. Mix well and serve in a shallow bowl.

Classic Skewers: Using a toothpick, alternately skewer green beans, olives and onions. Serve on a small plate.

Citrus: Quarter 3 lemons and 3 limes (Note: these are not the same lemons and lime you zested). Place in a serving bowl.

Egg-and-Beet Skewers: Boil one dozen eggs for about 11 minutes. Once done, drain them, peel them and place in a large mixing bowl with a drained can of beets. In a separate sauce pan, bring 1 cup each of sugar, water, apple cider vinegar and beet juice to a boil. Pour mixture over eggs (you want the liquid to cover the eggs and beets), then cover with plastic wrap and refrigerate for one to 24 hours (the longer the better). When done, the whites will have taken on a beautiful magenta color and a delicious, tangy flavor. Halve the eggs, then skewer them on a toothpick with a small beet.

Voilá! Brunch is served!


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