It’s a rare thing for me to cook, from a recipe or otherwise, but a few years ago I made eggnog Christmas morning and it was so delicious, it nearly became a family tradition. Notice I said nearly. Because this eggnog is not only delicious, it’s deceptive, dangerous, devilishly prone to producing drunkards, dozers and all kinds of family debacles. (Not to mention, just the memory of it awakens Deb Danielle’s ardor for alliteration.)
The adults started drinking it in the morning, just an innocent cup or two each, the same way you’d have, say, a mimosa. Most of us were feeling quite silly by noon. Now of course in my family we are all well-balanced, level-headed, totally emotionally stable folk who recognized this eggnog as devil’s work immediately, stopped drinking and wrenched ourselves back onto the path of righteousness.
But in another family, a less wholesome, more mercurial family, for example, a family where everyone might continue to drink this eggnog throughout the day, for example, this eggnog could lead to all kinds of mischief and shameful behavior. This fictional family (not mine!) might find themselves dashing through the neighborhood like hooligans, running all over people’s yards making snow angles, ringing doorbells and running away cackling and hooting. People in this family might find themselves singing obnoxious versions of classic carols, rolling on the floor or doing interpretive dance in front of the fireplace. They might erupt into terrible fights, burn the turkey, eat pie and ice cream for dinner, steal one-another’s Christmas gifts, gorge themselves on baked cheese and chocolates of all kinds and be wretchedly hung over (and possibly no longer speaking to each other) by five o’clock.
Of course, all we did was sing a few carols, play Boggle and get really, really sleepy, being the clean cut Canadians we are.
But if you’re looking to deepen the family dysfunction this holiday season, or there’s someone you really want to see running around in the snow in their boxers, here’s the recipe, courtesy of THE JOY OF COOKING.
EGGNOG IN QUANTITY
(in quantity only if you’re brave, it should say)
Beat separately until light in color:
12 egg yolks
Beat in gradually:
1 lb confectioners’ sugar
Add very slowly, beating constantly:
2 cups dark rum, brandy, bourbon or rye
These liquors may each form the basic ingredient of the nog or may be combined to taste. Let mixture stand covered for 1 hour to dispel the “eggy” taste. Add, beating constantly:
2-4 cups of liquor chosen (yep, that’s more booze!)
2 quarts whipping cream
1 cup peach brandy (this is normally in brackets as if it’s optional but it’s a must)
Refrigerate covered for 3 hours. Beat until stiff but not dry:
8-12 egg whites
Fold them lightly into other ingredients. Serve the eggnog sprinkled with:
Freshly grated nutmeg
Cheers! And please, if you serve this, come back and tell me how it goes.