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?

{ 13 comments }

DJ HawaiianShirt December 8, 2009 at 7:25 am

“…grab a dark Jamaican such as Coruba or a Blackstrap rum like Cruzan Blackstrap…”

wait, there’s more than one blackstrap rum?

Mike M December 8, 2009 at 10:22 am

Vanilla, Cinnamon, Pumpkin (Puree) are all welcome additions for me.

Ryan December 8, 2009 at 11:24 am

You might want to try adding a little pimento dram, and maybe cutting back on the sugar a bit for some extra spice, too. It’s pretty good.

Robert December 8, 2009 at 11:42 am

For me, Egg Nog is typically made and served like a punch…in large patches out of a pitcher or a bowl. I typically start with almost a creme anglaise (cooked egg yolks and sugar), add lots of cream, whipped egg whites, and some nutmeg. The whole thing gets chilled down and the spirits are added later (I usually use Brandy, but Rum would of course be acceptable or even more traditional). There’s a great standard recipe in the Joy of Cooking which can be altered and expanded upon to your hearts content!!

Suzanne Schaffner December 8, 2009 at 11:51 am

Have you ever tried a white port in egg nog? I’ve been thinking about trying our 2006 White Port in some egg nog this year. Wiens Family Cellars is a Temecula winery mostly known for “big reds” but we also have a following of White Port fans. Happy holidays!

Cocktail Enthusiast December 8, 2009 at 11:44 pm

The rum/brandy combo is definitely a good choice and my preferred method, but I’ve never tried adding rum cream. It certainly sounds like it would work. I’m making a batch of egg nogg this weekend for a holiday party, so I’ll give it a shot.

Matt Robold December 9, 2009 at 7:16 am

Some great suggestions and traditions here!

While I was researching egg nogg (i.e. drinking several glasses of it) I thought that using allspice or pimento dram might be an interesting way to spice it up.

I know there’s a version of egg nogg that uses cider, and since traditional nogg uses brandy I’ve been contemplating making one with some Applejack just to see how things turn out.

Matt Robold December 9, 2009 at 7:53 am

There are a lot of rums made with blackstrap molasses, but so few with the same character of Cruzan Blackstrap that I’ve modified the text to simply suggest a rum “like” Cruzan Blackstrap. Probably a more accurate statement.

Kasey December 9, 2009 at 8:56 pm

My eggnog-loving husband is really going to appreciate this recipe. Thanks!

Noelle December 13, 2009 at 10:27 am

I now want egg nogg. Not a good way to practice the GRE, but fun nonetheless. I’ll have to try some variation of this.

Thanks!

Arctic Wolf December 16, 2009 at 9:11 pm

I find the overall recipe rather bland (or watery) as well. Whipping the egg white separately and then folding the meringue into the rest adds much needed body. I would add a touch of real vanilla, then ground cloves, nutmeg and Cinnamon in a 1 to 2 to 3 ratio. Ground bittersweet chocolate sprinkled on top is a nice touch but be very careful not to over do the chocolate.

Here is my recipe:
http://therumhowlerblog.wordpress.com/2009/12/11/howling-highlight-christmas-eggnog/
which uses FDC 7 and Forty Creek Whishy.

bill vogel November 20, 2011 at 5:14 pm

why is egg nogg only available during certain times of the year. please let me know. thank you

bill vogel November 20, 2011 at 5:15 pm

why is egg nogg only available during certain times of the year thank you

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