With his new book, John Schlimm goes from tipsy to cheesy.
Spoonable Bloody Queen Marys
21⁄4 TEASPOONS UNFLAVORED POWDERED VEGAN GELATIN, SUCH AS LIEBER’S UNFLAVORED JEL (SEE NOTE)
4 TEASPOONS AGAR POWDER (SEE NOTE)
31⁄2 CUPS TOMATO JUICE
1⁄2 CUP VODKA
SALT AND FRESHLY GROUND BLACK PEPPER
1⁄2 TEASPOON VEGAN WORCESTERSHIRE SAUCE (PAGE 23, OR STORE-BOUGHT)
1⁄2 TEASPOON TABASCO SAUCE, OR MORE TO TASTE
5 RIBS CELERY, PEELED AND CHOPPED COARSELY
2 TABLESPOONS FRESHLY SQUEEZED LIME JUICE
1⁄4 CUP VEGAN PARMESAN CHEESE (PAGE 39, OR STORE-BOUGHT)
2 TABLESPOONS FINELY SHREDDED FRESH BASIL
Notes: The gelatin and agar powders need to set for 6 hours or overnight, so plan accordingly.If you don’t have a nearby source for Lieber’s Unflavored Jel or agar powder (vegan gelatins), they’re available on-line at VeganEssentials.com.
This unique, spoonable version of one of the world’s most iconic thirst quenchers has “showstopper” written all over it. Served in whiskey tumblers, this brunch starter (and/or ender), boasting such flavors as tomato, vodka, pepper, Worcestershire sauce, and Tabasco sauce, will be the talk of Brunch Town.
In a small saucepan, sprinkle the gelatin and agar powders over 1 cup of the tomato juice and let stand until softened, about 5 minutes. Set the saucepan over moderate heat and stir until the juice is warm and the gelatin and agar powders have dissolved completely, about 4 minutes. Do not let the juice get too hot.
Pour the juice into a 1-quart glass measuring cup and stir in the remain-ing 21⁄2 cups of tomato juice and the vodka. Season with the salt, pepper, Worcestershire sauce, and Tabasco sauce, then divide the juice mixture among eight whiskey tumblers. Place the tumblers on a tray and refrigerate until set, at least 6 hours to overnight.
In a blender, puree the celery with the lime juice. Strain the puree through a fine sieve and season with salt. Cover the celery juice and refrigerate until well chilled.
Add 2 tablespoons of the celery juice to each glass of tomato jelly. Top with heaping teaspoons of the Parmesan cheese and basil. Serve with long iced tea spoons.
Yields 8 SERVINGS
(*Recipe from the book The Cheesy Vegan by John Schlimm. Reprinted by arrangement with Da Capo Lifelong, a member of the Perseus Books Group. Copyright © 2013, Photo by Amy Beadle Roth)