When I got married, however, my husband mentioned that he loved eggnog. I had never learned to like eggnog, and in fact considered the creamy stuff in the red and green cartons something to be avoided at all costs. If they really wanted us to like eggnog, then why in the world did they give it such a name? What are we supposed to think when we hear that? Mmmm, nog. Nog with eggs. Even better! (Actually, no one is sure how eggnog got its name, but there is a theory that it has something to do with small wooden cups called “noggins.”)
In spite of my reservations toward the name, I decided to try some eggnog. Since I like to make things myself, I quickly moved from buying it to creating my own eggnog recipe. It’s simple to make, and back when our chickens were younger and producing more eggs than we could eat, it was a great way to use them up. Homemade eggnog has become a tradition, so now we’ve added one more special holiday drink recipe to our repertoire.
Homemade Eggnog Recipe
- blender or mixer (I use this one with a wire whisk attachment)
- heavy-bottom pot
- thermometer (preferably instant-read like this)
- 6 organic, cage-free eggs
- ⅓ cup organic sugar (find organic cane sugar here)
- 3 cups organic milk
- 1 cup organic whipping cream
- ½ tsp vanilla (find organic vanilla extract here or learn to make your own vanilla extract)
- ¼ tsp cinnamon (find organic ground cinnamon here)
- ¼ tsp nutmeg (find organic ground nutmeg here)
- Crack all of your eggs into the mixer bowl. Whisk for a few minutes until the eggs are well-blended. Add sugar, then slowly add in the milk and whipping cream, mixing all the while. Mix until everything is a uniform color and consistency.
- Pour the mixture into your heavy-bottomed pot. Place over medium heat. Make sure you grab your whisk – you’re going to be using it. You need to stir the eggnog constantly because it is quick to burn at the bottom.
- Your goal is to heat the eggnog up to 160°. Why 160? That’s how warm it needs to be to make sure it’s safe to consume the eggs. Not all recipes require you to cook the eggs, but I always prefer to take the extra precaution and make sure I’m preventing any food-borne illness. It takes from 15-20 minutes to heat the eggnog up enough to make it safe without causing it to solidify. A food thermometer is the best way to make sure your eggs are cooked enough, but if you don’t have one, test your eggnog on a spoon. When the mixture leaves a thick coating on the spoon, it is ready.
- Add the remaining ingredients. First, add the ½ tsp of vanilla and whisk well. Next, add the ¼ tsp of cinnamon and nutmeg, and again, mix well.
- Pour the mixture into a pitcher and store in the refrigerator. Eggnog isn’t a beverage that’s meant to be served warm, so cool it in the refrigerator. It will take at least six hours for the homemade eggnog to cool properly, but it’s best to plan ahead and leave the eggnog in the refrigerator overnight.
Eggnog Recipe Additions
We don’t use alcohol in our eggnog, but spiking your cup with a little bit of bourbon can help warm you up on a cold holiday evening. If you don’t like bourbon, you could instead add brandy or dark rum.
How about you?
Do you enjoy eggnog? Do you have a special way of fixing it?