On one of the last days in the month of September I was in the dairy section at my local grocery store buying what felt like the millionth gallon of milk for my job at a coffee shop. As I was loading my cart absolutely full with jug after jug of milk and anticipating which customer nearest to me would suggest, “You should have just bought a cow!” I noticed one of the sections was bare. I only had a split second to wonder why there was nothing behind that particular door when my curiosities were satisfied as a single quart sized carton of egg nog was placed on the shelf. Just as soon as it was stocked, I snatched it. It was a shining moment in my life that I will always remember. I got the first carton of nog for the year. I carried that quart like a trophy to the check out stand and proudly payed the woman as my perma-grin likely confused passers by.
I understand that eggnog is often a food item that is loved or hated. I’m clearly in the love column. I have my favorite brands. I drink it in coffee and lattes throughout the season. I’ll scoff at lowfat nog or flavored nog drinkers. Egg nog is one of those things that needs no embellishment. Sure, add it to your coffee in lieu of cream. Use it for your French toast. But the flavor of nog needs no enhancing so when I see vanilla eggnog, or pumpkin spice eggnog I am honestly confused as to why people are messing with beverage perfection.
So after going through a few cartons from the store I decided to take a stab at making some at home. I have always heard how the real stuff is leaps and bounds better than anything one could find in a store. I searched for a recipe and chose one with a whole lot of high ratings. Here’s the link if you’d like the recipe.
I followed the instructions verbatim, including the part where you stir the mixture while heating it on low for a full half an hour.
It’s actually not tough to make. But you really do have to heat the eggs, milk and sugar slowly while whisking nearly nonstop.
The last part of the recipe is the only tweak I would make to the concoction. Once you have everything ready to go you are supposed to slightly whip heavy cream before adding it to the cooled egg juice. The next time I make this I will not be whipping said cream but instead just stirring it in. The whipping gave the eggnog a head to it that I did not enjoy, The flavor was amazing. The recipe is really great. But instead of having a foamed top to the egg nog I would rather the thickness of the whipping cream was spread throughout.
I’m sure I’ll still purchase many more cartons of egg nog this year. But I definitely will also be making some. And come January when egg nog is pulled from the shelves and the holidays are over I’ll sigh at the upcoming seasons of stupid warmth. But at some point next July, when I’m dreaming about Thanksgiving and Christmas I know I will be able to recreate the greatest holiday drink of all time. Cheers!