There are few seasonal treats more festive than a cup of Homemade Eggnog. Whether you keep it family friendly, or add a jigger of holiday cheer, it always brings a smile to everyone's face.
The holidays are all about nostalgia. Most of the food I make, has a place in family memories of Christmases past. I wouldn't have it any other way, I love introducing the cook's who came before me to my own family, through food. My Grandma was famous for her classic Southern boiled custard made every Christmas. She often received requests for it from people in the local community and was always happy to oblige. What set hers apart was, she added citrus in the form of fresh oranges. She never served it without orange slices garnishing each cup for a hint of the flavor inside.
Helpful Tips for Making Homemade Eggnog
This eggnog recipe is also cooked like her boiled custard. Some eggnog recipes don't require that step but, people can be uncomfortable consuming raw eggs. While personally, I'm okay with it, I don't serve this eggnog without cooking it, just as my Grandma did, it's in my genes.
- It's important to temper the eggs, by adding the hot liquid slowly. Add in small amounts while whisking constantly. This decreases the chance of curdling the eggs.
- If despite your best efforts, the eggnog isn't smooth, don't panic. Push through a fine mesh strainer before chilling and, you'll be good to go.
- I don't include citrus as an ingredient but, you can add wedges or orange slices after cooking, for a hint of citrus flavor. Go easy, it intensifies in flavor as the oils are released into the eggnog.
- Likewise, if you want to make an adult version, you can add 1 cup of rum, bourbon or brandy adjusting the amount to your taste. Add it at the end of cooking, along with the cream and vanilla.
- If you'd like the flavor without the alcohol, try rum or brandy extract adding to your taste.
- It's fun to serve this eggnog in a punch bowl with whipped cream and cinnamon sticks for stirring. It's one of the few times I have the opportunity to pull it out and use those cute little cups. Depending on the size, you may want to make a double batch to fill it up.
- Start with the freshest of ingredients and this eggnog will keep chilled for 2-3 days.
Other Eggnog Goodies to Try
The season for eggnog is so short, I highly recommend enjoying it in as many ways as possible. Other eggnog recipes to try:
- Eggnog Pie
- Eggnog Rice Pudding
- Eggnog Pound Cake
- Chocolate Eggnog Pie
- Eggnog Cookies from Recipe Girl
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Helpful Kitchen Items:
- 4 cups whole milk
- ¼ tsp ground cinnamon
- ⅛ tsp ground nutmeg
- 1/16 tsp salt
- 6 large eggs
- ½ cup granulated sugar may adjust sweetness to taste
- 1 cup heavy cream
- 2 tsp pure vanilla extract
- whipped cream and cinnamon sticks for serving
- In a medium-size heavy bottomed saucepan combine milk, cinnamon, nutmeg and salt. Heat over medium heat until it reaches a low boil. Watch carefully.
- Meanwhile, in a mixing bowl, whisk eggs with sugar until pale yellow in color. Ladle hot milk into eggs whisking constantly about ½ cup at a time. Once combined, pour back into saucepan.
- Cook over medium-high heat stirring constantly until thickened, do not boil. (Check with a thermometer for 160°-170°F and until it coats the back of a spoon.)
- Remove from heat, add cream and vanilla, mix well. Strain through a fine mesh sieve if needed, to smooth. (May add 1 cup rum, brandy or bourbon, if desired)
- Place into a bowl or pitcher and cover. Chill overnight.
- Serve chilled topped with fresh whipped cream, a sprinkle of nutmeg and cinnamon sticks.
- Store leftovers chilled for 2-3 days.