Our American Eggnog

French Armagnac,
American Rye whiskey,
 Spanish Sherry
Rum from Jamaica!

I think George Washington might approve!



Not only was George Washington our first president, but he also passed down a
 variety of recipes that are part of his impressive legacy. He had an interesting recipe
 for beer, but my favorite was his most ‘powerful’ egg nog! It seemed to be a lot of nog
and little else. His original recipe is incomplete — as seems to be the habit
from the time — leaving out the most simple of ingredients : spices and eggs.
In addition, not many recipes from that period discussed the HOWS of making this
or that and left that for you.

They either thought the process was obvious or thought too much conversation
 would let too many secrets loose! Sounds all too much like my grandmother.

Here’s what was written:

1/2 cup sherry
1 cup rum (from Jamaica in those days)
1 cup rye whiskey*
2 cups brandy
3/4 cup sugar
4 cups whole milk
4 cups cream (heavy whipping cream**)

* American whiskey’s popularity resulted from the British preventing rum from reaching their ungrateful colonies during the American Revolution. viva la revolution!

** today’s ‘cream’ is a very poor substitute for what was called ‘cream’ of even fifty years ago, so use heavy whipping cream.



What we did differently:

1) First most recipes that ask for the proportions of cream, milk and spirits call for about
 a dozen eggs so we stick with this newer tradition. 12 , after all, is an English and
 colonial measurement.

2) There are various approaches to handling the eggs after separation. Some folks
 divide the sugar between the yolks and egg whites  and then beat , others place all the
 sugar in the yolks. Personally, I put most of it in the yolks and add a bit more sugar:
 1 cup of confectioner's sugar.

3) Some people take great pains in adding their ingredients in a laborious step-by-step
 process and although this makes some sense, there must be sounds reasons for each
effort. I add my egg whites last.

4) Modern recipes have added some charmed substances that were fairly rare in Colonial
 times and I have chosen to use many of what appears in a number of commercial eggnogs,
 as any other approach would make the eggnog too unfamiliar to modern tastes. I have
infused vanilla bean into the milk which results in an extra step or two.

5) Today it is hard to find a non-alcoholic or alcoholic eggnog that doesn't add spices
directly into the nog during preparation and so in keeping to this new noble tradition
I add my seasoning to the egg yolk mixture.

Here's what I add (use what you need to get it where you want it to be):
Nutmeg and mace, ginger, cloves, cinnamon, and allspice  


After separating the egg yolks from the
 white add your powdered sugar and mix.

Slowly pour, mix, pour your alcoholic
concoction into your egg yolks while
 continually mixing. This will take some
 time... so take your time.

Preparing to infuse the vanilla flavor
 into the milk. Turn on a low fire to your milk,
 slit and pull out the interior of 2 Vanilla
Beans and mix. Throw in the Vanilla Bean
 casing as well. Bring to bubbling and
 then set aside and cool in the refrigerator.

This can be done well ahead of time.

Strain the vanilla bean casing and
larger particles from the infused milk.

Hummm... it already smells good!


Throw 1/4 cup or more of powdered sugar
atop the egg whites and mix.

Mix until the egg whites are stiff and 'peak.'

Add your cream to the mixture followed by
 the peaked egg whites stirring constantly
or use your mixer on low until well blended!

Here is the final eggnog!

A bit over a gallon of bliss!

allow your nog to sit for a few days then..
Enjoy this remarkable drink and take a small step back in time!