Home Made From Scratch Eggnog
We always serve this for our New Year's Day Christmas Tree Planting Party. Many people ask for the recipe. So, here it is!
Bucky's Famous Eggnog From Scratch
1 dozen eggs
1 pound confectioner's sugar
2 quarts whipping cream
The mnemonic for remembering the ingredients when shopping is: One and One are Two.)
The day before the party, separate the eggs. Reserve the whites.
Mix yolks, sugar and cream in a large bowl. Don't beat, just mix thoroughly. A few drops of vanilla may be added for fun. Cover and let stand refrigerated overnight to dispel "eggy" flavor.
Half an hour before you want to serve, begin beating mixture. Beat until very thick. This can take a long time: 15 minutes, so be prepared to stand there a while! The mixture will never become stiff, but it will eventually become thick. (Traditional 'nog omits this step: it is thickened only by the whites.) But we like ours very thick, and to replicate ours, this long beating is essential.
Prepare to whip whites by cleaning and drying beaters: they must be clean as a whistle and completely dry. Any little bit of moisture can prevent whites from stiffening. Beat whites until very stiff; almost to meringue, but not quite. Fold whites into beaten mixture. Leave the whites a bit lumpy. Pour into punch bowl for serving.
Put nutmeg on table to sprinkle on top. Ground nutmeg is good, but a fresh nut in a grinder is best. If you wish, scotch whiskey, rye whiskey, bourbon, rum, cognac and brandy may be served with the 'nog. Many people enjoy "Parrot Juice" in their 'nog: cocoanut-flavored rum.
If serving spirits, put small spoons and a plate on the 'nog table.
The traditional recipe for eggnog includes several cups of at least three kinds of spirits addded to the 'nog itself. We make ours boozeless so that all may indulge, but you might have to explain to folks that yours is boozeless, as many people just expect it to be spiked. Most folks have never had "spike your own" 'nog. So of course you'll have to demonstrate how to spike and stir. Show some folks how to splash a little spirits into their cup, fill cup with 'nog, stir well, and garnish with nutmeg. (Used stirring spoons go on the plate.) Tell those folks to demonstrate to others.
Serves up to 30 if they are reasonably conservative. We have made double batches, but always have a lot left over in that case. A jar of 'nog makes a nice parting gift for special guests.
The Story of Boozeless 'Nog
Years ago, Bucky's mother Yo used always to make eggnog from scratch for Christmas. It was a treat enjoyed only by adults, because Yo added spirits to her eggnog according to the traditional recipe. One year, Bucky's Nana, who was partial to her drink, having had a few cups of Yo's delicious eggnog decided that if a little was good, a lot would be better, and poured a fifth of Pikesville rye into the eggnog! Whew! Nana was, sadly, alone in her enjoyment of the result. Ever since then eggnog has been made without booze.