Tomato salad with fermented ricotta cream and Bloody Mary sauce



Two days before you plan to serve the dish, ferment the ricotta. Place it in a sealed plastic container and leave for between 24 and 48 hours in a cool dark place. Taste the ricotta every so often until it reaches your desired level of sourness, then transfer to the fridge


Prepare the tomato water and gel the day before you plan to serve the dish. Place a saucepan over a medium heat and add the tomatoes, red onion, celery, basil, salt and sugar, then cook until the water from the tomatoes starts to seep out. Strain the liquid through a sieve lined with muslin and reserve 400g of the resulting tomato water for the Bloody Mary soup. Transfer the rest of the liquid to a jug, add back to the pan and bring to the boil. Add 1 leaf of gelatine per 150ml of liquid, stirring to dissolve. Once the gelatine is completely dissolved, pour the mixture into a container and leave to set in the fridge overnight


Prepare the brined green tomatoes while the tomato gel is setting. Whisk together the salt and water until dissolved, then add the peppercorns and bay leaf. Score the skin of the tomatoes then place them into the brine, use a small weight to ensure they remain submerged. Refrigerate overnight


Begin making the tomato rolls at the same time. Drizzle the tomatoes, red onion and basil with olive oil, red wine vinegar, salt and sugar, cover and leave at room temperature overnight

  • 1 tsp sugar
  • 1/2 red onion
  • 2 sprigs of basil
  • olive oil
  • red wine vinegar
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 5 Roma tomatoes, roughly chopped


To prepare the pickled red onion, finely slice the onion and set aside in a bowl. Combine the water, red wine vinegar and sugar in a pan, bring to a boil, pour over the onion and leave to pickle overnight in the fridge

  • 1/2 red onion
  • 50ml of water
  • 50ml of red wine vinegar
  • 50g of sugar


On the day you’re ready to serve the dish, preheat the oven to 60°C or the lowest possible setting on a gas oven with the door slightly ajar


Transfer the tomato roll mixture to a blender with the egg white and blend until smooth, then pass through a sieve. Spread in a thin layer onto a silpat mat and place in the oven for 3–4 hours. Remove from the mat, increase the heat to 130°C/gas mark 1/2 and cut into 8x9cm rectangles. Roll around a cylindrical baking mould and bake at 130°C for 3 minutes, then remove and leave to cool completely. Increase the heat of the oven to 150°C/gas mark 2


To prepare the red onion chips, slice the red onion on a mandoline to create cross-section slices. Combine the sugar and water in a saucepan and bring to the boil, then pour the syrup over the onions. Once the syrup has cooled, strain off the onions and lay gently on a silpat mat, completely flat. Bake for 10 minutes, or until crispy

  • 150g of sugar
  • 1 red onion
  • 150ml of water


To prepare the tomato purée, cut the tomatoes in half and place cut-side down on a baking sheet lined with parchment paper. Drizzle with olive oil, salt and sugar and bake for 10 minutes. Drop the oven temperature to 70°C and cook the tomatoes for another 2 hours to dry out. Once the outside of the tomatoes become tacky to the touch, transfer to a blender and blitz into a smooth paste


To make the fermented ricotta cream, blend the fermented ricotta and double cream until smooth, transfer to a piping bag and refrigerate until ready to serve

  • 200g of cream


Pour the peanut oil in a deep heavy-bottomed saucepan and heat to 170°C. Carefully place a handful of basil into the oil, fry until crispy, then place on kitchen paper to drain

  • 1 handful of basil
  • peanut oil


To prepare the Bloody Mary soup, blitz the celery leaves in a blender with 400g of the reserved tomato water, the vodka and the ice cubes until smooth, then strain through a sieve. Season to taste with Tabasco, Worcestershire sauce and, if needed, a little more vodka. Pour into a jug and refrigerate until ready to serve


To serve, combine the contents of the teabag with the chilli and salt. Pipe the ricotta cream into the tomato rolls, then dip the ends of each roll into the blend of chilli, salt and tea (this should be done last minute to prevent the roll from becoming soggy). In the bottom of each bowl place a spoonful of the fermented ricotta cream and a spoonful of the tomato purée. Cover with the tomato salad and garnish with pickled onions, onion chips and fried basil. Serve alongside the ricotta-filled tomato roll, with a jug of the Bloody Mary soup to pour over the top

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