Dec 162012


Ahh, eggnog. What’s not to love? Aside from the cloying taste and extra-thick unnatural texture, that is. I also want to wail in despair whenever I read the ingredient list, as cheap, low-quality sweeteners are usually the second ingredient and it just goes down-hill from there. Luckily, those issues are easy to remedy by making this holiday treat at home.

I had long wanted to tackle this drink at home, but hadn’t dipped my toes in until this year, when I saw a great write-up on America’s Test Kitchen feed, and inspiration struck. So we headed to the market to get really good eggs, and you can imagine what happened from there.

Yesterday was a very Christmas-y day in our kitchen. I made my family’s gingerbread mini-muffins, and when the process was interrupted (as it invariably is these days) by the baby’s need to eat, The Hubs jumped into action and made the nog. So there were plenty of reasons to be merry in the house, and if you are looking for one to brighten up your own holiday, you can look no further!

Bourbon-spiked eggnog
From America’s Test Kitchen
Makes about 3 quarts

It is easier to separate eggs when they’re cold. Let the separated yolks come to room temp and then proceed with the recipe.
Any whiskey or rum will work, but my favorite is bourbon.
12 large egg yolks, room temperature
1½ cups (7oz) granulated sugar
4½ cups whole milk
1½ cups half-and-half
1 cup whiskey
Freshly grated nutmeg
1½ teaspoons vanilla extract
Using stand mixer fitted with whisk, whip egg yolks on medium-high speed until thickened and pale, about 1 minute. Gradually add sugar and whip until completely dissolved, scraping down bowl as needed, about 2 minutes; reserve.
Heat milk and half-and-half just to simmer in medium saucepan over medium heat. Using stand mixer fitted with whisk, whip reserved yolk-sugar mixture on medium-low speed, gradually adding hot milk mixture until combined, about 2 minutes. Transfer mixture to now-empty pot and cook over medium heat, whisking constantly, until mixture registers 160 degrees, about 30 seconds.
Off heat, stir in whiskey, 2 teaspoons nutmeg, and vanilla and transfer to large container. Let cool over ice bath, about 10 minutes. Refrigerate until well chilled, about 1½ hours, or overnight. Season with nutmeg to taste. Serve.

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