With only 2 more days until Big Hero 6, we present a wasabi kick in Wasabi’s Red Slicer Punch.
Wasabi (no Ginger) Red Slicer Punch
0.5 oz lemon juice (Eureka, Ponderosa, any real lemon (as opposed to Meyer, which is genetically half-orange)
1 dash (1/8 tsp) salt
1 dash (1/8 tsp) black pepper
1 scsp – 1 bsp (.25-.5 tsp) wasabi
1 Jigger (2 oz) dry gin
1 Jigger (2 oz) tomato juice
1-3 nickel-thick slices of ginger root (optional)
Celery stalk for garniture
Add lemon, salt, pepper, and wasabi to metal mixing tin
(If using ginger, add to tin and muddle to a toothpaste consistency )
Add gin to tin
Set out a punch tumbler (capacity 10.5-11 oz.)
Insert 4 1-oz (~1″ cubes) service ice
Add tomato juice to mixing tin, add ice, seal with mixing glass to form Boston shaker
Gently roll drink with tumbling motion for 10-15s
Strain into tumbler using hawthorne strainer only
Garnish with celery stalk, serve with straw
Welcome back to our countdown to Big Hero 6, where we’ll be going through each team member with a drink! Now, while my first preference is to take an preexisting drink and reconstruct it, I’m settling for something that I feel represents their personalities or tastes and what they would drink (if they were into alcohol), rather than something that say, looks exactly like them (without naming a few sites)… Now, we don’t have a lot of material to go on for any of these characters, so I’m going to be running entirely off of a) knowledge from their official character bios and released images, b) trailers and TV spots, and c) extrapolations from some of the general info floating around from the old comic miniseries from 2008 that Disney appears to be blending with original content and the first team.
The first guy, second team member I want to present is Wasabi. Big, imposing looking black-guy, he’s actually the most tentative of the group. In the ’08 miniseries at least, he was a sushi chef, which carries over to his alter ego’s plasma blades and his very thoughtful personality in the movie. He’s cautious, reluctant to fight, and the most (over)analytical. He’s a neat freak, all about precision and very exact ratios: anal retentive (hesitating to use the phrase OCD due to misappropriation/mislabeling), and fixated on doing things correctly with proper technique. For him, I wanted to have a drink that relied on good method to execute and taste good. Thankfully you won’t need actual plasma blades.
Now, with a name like Wasabi, and given the whole Japanese-American fusion thing we have going on in San-Fransokyo, obviously we were going to (hopefully not too-redundantly/obviously) incorporate wasabi as part of the spice profile of the punch. However, in the comics, his old name was Wasabi-no-Ginger. They’ve since removed that from his name for the movie, but I honestly think it’s so cool a name and a nice way to pay homage to the original source material that I’d like to incorporate it. Now, there are two ways I could read this. In English, I parse that as wasabi, no ginger. Fair enough, anything but ginger. On the other hand, coming from Japanese, as best as I can understand is it translates approximately to something like Wasabi’s ginger. As in “His Ginger”. [Picture of a ginger: probably a), not b)]. Personally really enjoying wasabi and ginger together (pickled on sushi, or otherwise), I decided to include the ginger.
This drink is basically a take on a Bloody Mary, or Red Snapper, depending. The oldest recipe for a Bloody Mary came from the UK and used dry gin, but Americans adapted it with vodka. When they “rediscovered” it with gin, they renamed the “variation” the Red Snapper. Either way, it’s a departure from that, with adjusted aromatic parts. Like I’ve covered before, there’s an important thing to focus on in making sure that the tomato isn’t exposed to metal for too long a time, nor excessive amounts of air contact. So rather than aerating the hell out of it to chill whilst shaking, a simple rolling motion will suffice: just turning the sealed shaker slowly end-over-end like once a second. Alternatively, gentle pouring back and forth works acceptably as well, like so:
I believe a tomato juice-filled punch is time-of-day-independent, if you’re in the comfort of your own home. You will not earn a bartender’s love asking for this at 10pm when they’re slammed. Serve with bacon (hell, add it to the garnish if you want) and a fried egg or tamagoyaki and it’s a hair-of-the-dog (late) morning drink, or with a dinner of broiled fish in the evening. Long ago, sweet punches were served with plain cake for contrast (solid vs liquid, dry vs sweet and sour), so I’d even consider trying them with wagashi. (For the record, I have not done so yet, your mileage may vary). Let us know when it’s best, and what you eat it with!