Last weekend was cloudy, with on and off showers, which made for near-perfect beach days. As someone who grew up on the water, a sunny day over 75 degrees used to mean the beach was mandatory. A rainy day was a respite. No sun, no beach.
But as I’ve aged, and no longer sit in the sun, I’ve come to love the beach in the rain. Crowds stay away, and swimming under a slow and steady drizzle (sans thunder and lightning) is sublime – a rain-and-sea-and-me bond.
A rainy day on the sand is also ripe for a gathering under the umbrella for Bloody Marys.
So the forecast for this weekend is rain. Beach it. And bring along the bloodies.
Here’s my Seven-Shake Bloody Mary recipe, as salty as the sea, and adapted from an old friend’s father, who used to make these for us 20-somethings on a hungover morning-after back in the 1980s, when we would spend the night, and wake up on the beach. (Always make one at a time so as not to lose count, and risk disturbing the chemistry):
*Stuff an 8-ounce shaker with ice, and add 2-4 ounces of vodka
7 shakes of Tabasco
7 shakes of celery salt
7 shakes of Worcestershire
7 shakes of pepper
7 shakes of garlic powder
Fresh horseradish – add to your liking. Me: I like my bloody speckled. I add two heaping tablespoons.
*Top with Clamato juice
Shake lightly – pour the whole thing into a chilled glass (take out all the ice except for a cube or two), and garnish with either pickles, olives, celery, shrimp, lemon slices, cucumbers, bacon! – or all seven.