Egg Nogg

by Matt Robold on December 8, 2009

Egg Nogg

Egg Nogg, or Egg Nog, or Eggnog – however you spell it, it’s synonymous with the holidays.  A drink older than the term “cocktail” that many associate with it, its origins lie somewhere in the 18th Century with popular “flips” or drinks made with spirits and eggs, often served hot, but not necessarily so.

Much like the ever-popular Hot Buttered Rum, most people make Egg Nogg using a store-bought premix and then adding brandy or rum.  Of course, as you can imagine I’m about to say, you need no store-bought mixture to make Egg Nogg.  And when the question comes to “Do I use Brandy or do I use Rum?” the answer is quite nicely: BOTH!

Egg Nogg

.75 oz Brandy
.75 oz Rum
.5 oz Sugar
3 oz Whole Milk or Heavy Cream
1 Whole Egg

Mix rum, brandy, sugar, egg, and milk in a mixing tin.  Fill the tin with ice and shake like your life depends on it. Strain into a glass or goblet and garnish with freshly grated nutmeg.

The recipe you see here is cribbed from my copy of The Mixicologist, which rather blatantly “borrowed” the recipe word-for-word from Jerry Thomas’ bartending guides.  Originally calling for a “large tea-spoonful” of powdered sugar and for the mixing glass to be filled the rest of the way with “rich milk,” the Olde Time recipe of Egg Nogg is actually rather boring.  In fact, much as it pains me to do so, I’m forced to agree with Jeffrey Morgenthaler that the Jerry Thomas recipe for Egg Nogg is somewhat “watery.”

There are some things that can be done to easily correct this.  I’ve already suggested above that you might use heavy cream in the place of whole milk if you find that the texture is a tad light.  In addition, instead of using just any rum, grab a dark Jamaican such as Coruba or a rum like Cruzan Blackstrap (or BOTH!) to give the nogg some depth.  If you want to spice it up a touch, grab a bottle of spiced rum like Kraken or Old New Orleans Cajun Spiced.

If you’re feeling a little more adventurous (and have access to a bottle), try adding about .25 oz of rum cream (either Cruzan or El Dorado work beautifully) to the mixture before shaking.  Add a quarter teaspoon of fresh nutmeg to the mixing tin as well to get the spices really mixed into your cup.

Question of the Day:

What goodies (cinnamon, cider, etc.) do you like to add to your Egg Nogg?

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