Calling all lovebirds, jailbirds, mockingbirds, and blue-footed boobys! I can’t wait to show you what’s in store for you in this month’s Tattler. I’ve been working on all sorts of stuff for your reading, drinking, and shopping pleasure.
You’ll notice a fairly obvious theme – February is American Heart Month, both in terms of keeping your ticker healthy, and sharing the feels with someone special. And as per usual, I can think of a Bloody Mary to go with each and every one holiday!
American Heart Month
An Affair to Remember Month
Canned Food Month
Creative Romance Month
Great American Pie Month
National Weddings Month
Spunky Old Broads Month
National Hot Breakfast Month
Marijuana Awareness Month
2/7 – 2/13: Dump Your Significant Jerk Week
2/8 – 2/14: National Secondhand Wardrobe Week
2/15 – 2/21: International Flirting Week
2/2: Groundhog Day
2/3: The Day the Music Died – anniversary of the plane crash that killed The Big Bopper, Richie Valens, and Buddy Holly
2/4: Facebook’s birthday
2/6: Working Naked Day
2/7: Wave All Your Fingers at Your Neighbor Day
2/8: Man Day
2/9: Clean Out Your Computer Day
2/11: White T-Shirt Day
2/13: Blame Someone Else Day – first Friday the 13th of the year
2/14: Valentine’s Day
2/15: Singles Awareness Day
2/16: Do A Grouch A Favor Day
2/16: President’s Day – third Monday of month
2/17: Random Acts of Kindness Day
2/19: Chinese New Years – date varies
2/20: Hoodie Hoo Day
2/21: National Tortilla Chip Day
2/27: National Bacon Day
2/28: Open That Bottle Night
BLOODY MARY OF THE MONTH
Are you a purist who uses vodka in all your Bloody Marys? I’m all over the map, myself, always looking for the Next New Thing: coconut rum, Jagermeister, you name it. But after what I learned about vodka this month, I may just go back to the basics.
- You can use it to reduce a fever by rubbing it on your chest, back, and upper legs.
- It’s an excellent disinfectant.
- Vodka was invented about 1000 years ago in Babylon.
- Poland likes to make potato and grain based vodkas. Russians focus mostly on wheat and rye. The UK and Germany like to use other grains, while France, Italy and Balkan region produce vodkas form fermented grapes and fruits. The US, Canada, Australia, and the Caribbean typically make their vodkas from molasses.
- In the 1400’s, a type of vodka was used to make gunpowder in Sweden.
- The first vodka in Russia was used as medicine. The first vodka in Poland made a great aftershave.
- The reason vodka was so popular in Russia was the fact that it never froze, even during the harsh winters. This is because of the high alcohol content.
- If you think vodka can be kept indefinitely, like wine, think again. It’s shelf life is only 1 year.
- The correct temperature for sippin’ vodka is between 46 and 50 degrees F. If your vodka isn’t the highest quality, serve it colder than that to mask the taste.
- Vodka is said to be the purest drink in the world, as in contains the fewest fusel oils (the oils that result from the fermentation process).
IN OTHER NEWS…
Progress on the bottled mix has been halted for most of January, for these 3 reasons:
- I’m appearing in Carmen with the Portland Opera, February 6-14. Regardless of the fact that I am the least important member of the cast, I still have to go to all the rehearsals. So it’s keeping me very busy. Consider bringing your sweetie to the show for Valentine’s Day. It’s gonna be HAWT!!!
- I’m smack in the middle of a product launch for my wellness program. That entails preparing, practicing and delivering a 45-minute webinar, not to mention writing tons of sales copy and sticking my face on every social media platform known to man. Totally worth it, but it’s a full-time job all by itself.
- I got super intimidated by all the setbacks and red tape I ran into. I’ll admit it. Recipe issues. Legal issues. Branding issues. Production issues. It’s a wonder any food gets manufactured at all.
Things are once more moving ahead, beginning with a major shift in both name and recipe. In fact, I’m off to the store right now to pick up some ingredients.
Also — I’m thrilled to introduce a brand new product to the Bloody Mary family! These adorable and oh-so-useful bookmarks will soon be available for purchase on my website. They look like ordinary bookmarks, but they’re impregnated with tomato seeds; so when spring comes, you just plant them in the ground, and voila! Up comes your very own Bloody Mary garden! But here’s the really great part: they come apart, so you’ll still have a cute bookmark AND a tomato plant! Check here in a week or so to see if they’re available yet. Remember, I’m a busy girl!
I’ve created a new column for the Tattler, where readers get to ask their most burning questions about anything — Bloody Marys or otherwise.
Since this is brand new, no one has had a chance to submit any questions yet (besides the one I get asked every single day: “How do you have time to do everything you do?”) I’ll pull one from the book. It’s about what to bring on a picnic, but it also works for tailgate parties, sitting on the sidelines of your kid’s soccer game, etc.
The whole loaf-of-bread/jug-of-wine scene is such a cliché. What are some ingredients for a hip, upscale picnic?
I’m glad you asked. You’re absolutely right, that tired old picnic formula has been done to death. Why not try a Bloody Mary? It’s a sensible choice because, unlike beer or soda pop, it can handle being jostled during transport, and it’s not sensitive to being left out in the heat. You can bring it to a brunch, or to a late afternoon supper. It’s simple to throw together at home and takes up very little room in your cooler. You can even add the vodka ahead of time so there’s one less thing to carry.
In the cooler, arrange a couple of re-freezable ice packs, a plastic container filled with ice cubes (easier to drain off any water that accumulates), a leak-proof mason jar full of Bloody Mary mix, a vial of vodka (if it’s not already in the jar), and a zip-top bag of celery sticks. Remember the mantra: keep it simple, and prep beforehand. Adding ice to a glass and twisting open a jar is about as simple as it gets. And in this case, even the prep is simple – add things to a jar and shake.
Some food pairings to consider: cucumber sandwiches on rye bread, a cold pasta salad, or a quiche with bacon and carmelized onion.
Want a recipe for the mix to get you started? Here you go!
- 12 oz canned tomato juice
- 1 tsp each of black pepper, lemon pepper, celery salt, chili-garlic sauce, Worcestershire sauce, lemon juice, and fresh grated horseradish
- 2 jiggers vodka
- 4 green olives, to serve
Shake the tomato juice and seasonings well in a mason jar. Fill 2 12-oz glasses (or plastic cups) with ice cubes, add 1 jigger of vodka to each, and top off both cups with the Bloody Mary mix. Float 2 olives on top of each drink. Serves 2.
That’s all the news for now. Have a happy, safe, and bibulous February! And if you have any questions you want posted in the Ask Judy column, don’t hesitate to get in touch with me at firstname.lastname@example.org.