Bloody Mary Salad

I think the name “Bloody Mary” comes from Mary Tudor, daughter of Henry VIII and Catherine of Aragon. I found a recipe for this salad and started thinking about the name and then the Tudors which led me to Catherine of Aragon. The Tudors is a mini-series about Henry and his cartwheeling travels through women, confidants, enemies, allies and corpses. He is not the most interesting character once you get a look at Catherine, mother of Mary. Catherine calls Henry “my sweetheart” even after he leaves her bed for other beds. She holds her head up high in court and enjoys the adoration of the people. She warns Ann Boleyn that Henry is playing with her and that Ann should take advantage of the jewelry and other favors. But, Ann will never be his true love. Catherine has courage, grace and intelligence. Henry divorced Catherine, but she did keep her head.

I stopped by Springfield College campus to check in with several students during the lunch break. It was the first class of the winter semester. I had been trying to connect with one of my advisees through email, phone, letters to no avail. She gave birth to a baby boy 5 weeks ago. There she stood in the hallway holding the handle of the baby carrier. Her little boy was sleeping. When I asked her how she had been, she ticked off a long list of Job-like travails that left me speechless. Mastitis, kidney stone, husband hospitalized for respiratory infection, all three children down with colds or the flu. She smiled and said that they were lucky because the father-in-law lives with them and operates as taxi driver and chief bottle washer. Catherine of Aragon in the flesh.

Bloody Mary Salad

1/2 cup shallots
1 lb. cherry tomatoes
1 cup sliced celery
1 cup sliced and quartered cucumbers
1/2 cup halved green martini olives
1/2 cup chopped pickled asparagus
1/2 cup fresh parsley

2 tbsp. fresh lemon juice
2 tbsp. tomato paste
1 tbsp. prepared horseradish
1/2 tsp. tabasco sauce
3 tbsp. extra-virgin olive oil
salt and pepper to taste

Combine vegetables. Mix dressing ingredients and toss salad with dressing to coat. Season with salt and pepper. Chill before serving