Bloody Mary tomato sauce; a hint of heat makes this easy-to-make sauce a real winner. Use as a dip or sauce, it’s brilliantly versatile
An easy way to stoke an argument is to disagree with a cocktail aficionado about what should go into a proper Bloody Mary: the main ingredients are easy: tomato juice, vodka, and Worcestershire sauce. But from then it gets trickier. A hot sauce of some form is common, but should it be Tabasco, or something else? Celery salt, yes or no? A slice of lemon is a common garnish, but what about lemon juice? And finally, a stick of celery to stir it all with, complete with leaves at the top.
Worcestershire sauce is a great Victorian invention; the secret recipe was invented by John Wheeley Lea and William Henry Perrins in the 1830 in the county that gave it its name. The original iteration was not a success, and it was only after a barrel had matured for some months that they decided that they had a winning condiment. It was from the success of their sauce that they started the eponymous company Lea & Perrins.
Worcestershire has since been merged with its neighbouring county of Hereford and sits approximately one third of the way across the widest part of England and Wales.
The original Lea & Perrins gets its intense addictive umami flavour from fermented anchovies, but of course there are many vegetarian and vegan brands available. We prefer the original in the bottle with the charismatic orange label.
This recipe is just a matter of mixing the ingredients, and adjusting the resulting sauce to taste. As no blender is needed, it’s perfect for when you’re away from your kitchen. There are many obvious uses: serve with steak, oysters, or barbecued chicken wings, or our freeze ahead chicken kebabs, and here are a few more ideas.
7 Uses for Bloody Mary Sauce
- With seafood; prawns and crabsticks
- As a dip served with crudites and crackers
- As a marinade for chicken or for kebabs
- Stir into a casserole
- Dollop onto a burger
- Stir into mayonnaise and serve with thick cut chips
- Use it to perk up shop bought dips like hummus.
Buy a packet of wraps and make a batch of my crispy baked homemade tortillas and dip in!
For more of a kick, and a sauce that is perfect with lamb you might like our kebab shop chilli sauce.
A delicious variation on ketchup, with a traditional kick from Worcester and chili sauces.
- 4 tbs tomato ketchup
- 1 tsp Worcestershire sauce (use vegan / vegetarian if needed)
- 1 tsp Chilli sauce
- ½ tsp celery salt
- zest 1/2 lemon
- 1 tsp lemon juice
- 10 cherry tomatoes - finely chopped
Mix, adjust seasoning if needed.