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A Happy and Healthy New Year! May you give and find gifts, opportunities and comfort all year. Happy cooking and reading!

Toast a Bloody Mary at Midnight!

Foodie Lit

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In my cookbook Eat, Read and Dream, written with dear friend and colleague, Geri Clouston, I paired a vampire story named Bloody Mary with (what else!!!) a fabulous Bloody Mary recipe. What could be more appropriate!


Even if you are not into vampires, Bloody Marys are perfect for bringing in the New Year with a subtle spicy taste, a bit of citrus and a hearty tomato flavor. Make it virgin and have it with brunch!


Bottoms up to a happy and healthy New Year filled with gifts, opportunities, and a bright future for all of us. Happy eating, reading and dreaming! Recipe is below.

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Spicy Bloody Mary

Yield 2-4 ounces Bloody Marys

1 cup tomato or V-8 juice

1 tablespoon white horseradish

1 teaspoon Worcestershire sauce

1/4 teaspoon tabasco sauce

Pinch celery salt

1 lime, freshly squeezed

2 ounces vodka

Dash black pepper

Dash sea salt

Garnish per drink

1 stalk celery with leaves

2 cherry tomatoes

2 green olives with pimento

1 hot pepper, optional


  1. Combine Bloody Mary mix in a pitcher. Pour 8 ounces mix and vodka into a highball glass containing ice. Stir well.

  2. Adjust how spicy, salty or citrusy you like it.

  3. Garnish with a celery stalk, olives and cherry tomatoes on a skewer and a lime slice. Add 2 cubes of ice.


Expandthetable suggestions:

Like it hot? Add 5 drops hot sauce

Non-alcoholic: Omit vodka and enjoy a spicy tomato drink!

In this season of Chanukah, Corona Virus, Christmas and corruption, it is rewarding to read about heroism, and that’s what Kathryn Lang Slattery gives us with the story of her uncle Herman Lang, a German Jewish refugee who served in US Army Intelligence. Trained at Camp Ritchie, Herman and other German Jewish refugees recruited to the Army Intelligence got the name the Ritchie Boys and were critical in bringing an end to the Nazi terror.


Kathryn shared, “I wanted to tell this story because it was different from any other Holocaust story I had read. The Jewish hero is not a victim, but a young man who gradually grows from a frightened and frustrated teenager, looking for a place to belong, into a confident US Army intelligence officer who struggles with the conflicting emotions of hate and forgiveness.”

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