Back in the day, I used a variant of my decadent vanilla frozen custard recipe to make homemade eggnog. The only modification was I included the egg whites after they’d been whipped. Oh what a frothy mass of yummy goodness that is. Its great for a party, but doesn’t store particularly well.
And so it came to pass that for this holiday most glorious spousal unit asked me to pick up a quart of eggnog for personal use.
Well, everybody knows that eggnog is just another vehicle for alcohol consumption. Therefore and hereinafter, my favorite recipe for Egg Nog (note the capitalization!) includes the addition of both Kahlúa and Cognac. Spiced with both freshly ground cinnamon and nutmeg, it’s a holiday in a glass.
I like to try to uncover the history of alcoholic beverages and Egg Nog shall be no exception. And, as usual, the origins prove rather elusive. I tend to pick the more interesting stories and run with that.
The story goes that “eggnog” originated as “egg and grog”. Everyone knows that “grog” became a guttural expression for rum and references a drink made with water (or a weak beer) and rum, which British Vice Admiral Edward Vernon introduced into the Royal Navy on 21 August 1740. The good Admiral wore a heavy topcoat of grogam cloth (a thick material composed of a combination of silk, mohair and wool stiffened with gum) and was nicknamed Old Grogram or Old Grog. After a night of some heavy grog consumption, a couple of raw eggs dropped in some hair-of-the-dog probably made for a nice breakfast. Add in a bit of slurred sailor speak and “egg and grog” morphs to “egg’n grog” and finally to “eggnog.” The old Admiral left quite a legacy.
Whilst rum is the traditional spike, a variant arose in the New World when the supply of rum became scarce as a result of the Revolutionary War. Americans turned to our own domestically produced whiskey and bourbon came into vogue.
As you may have noticed, neither rum or bourbon has entered my glass.
That’s an ounce of Kahlúa on the bottom, the eggnog in the middle, and an ounce of Cognac on top. Call it an alcoholic’s egg sandwich.
I hadn’t intended on the layering effect, it just sorta happened, but it looks kinda cool, eh?
After a wee bit of mixing and the addition of some more eggnog, I was ready for the finishing touches. That’s a nutmeg atop the grater. Whole nutmeg is just so much more flavorful than the pre-ground stuff and, if kept in sealed jar, it lasts nearly forever. It’s the same deal with cinnamon. I grabbed a stick and gave it a few quick grates.
Give it a whiff! It’s amazingly fragrant and somehow conveys warmth.
A few of these ought to get the folks into the proper holiday spirit, so if you don’t have the fixins handy, run out and pick them up before all the stores close!
Happy Holidays Maties!