Try this recipe once, and you'll never buy eggnog at the grocery store again.
By definition, eggnog is simply a blend of milk or cream, beaten eggs, sugar, nutmeg and liquor. Of course, if you ask a modern cocktail connoisseur, they’ll likely tell you that a homemade eggnog needs to age. I tend to disagree. As far as I’m concerned, a quick eggnog is just as good. In fact, it’s really similar to a classic flip, a raw-egg-based drink that dates back more than 100 years.
In his 1862 book, “How to Mix Drinks,” Jerry Thomas, the grandfather of mixology, offered this method for making an egg flip:
“Beat up, in a jug, four new-laid eggs, omitting two of the whites; add a half dozen large lumps of sugar, and rub these well in the eggs, pour in boiling water, about half a pint at a time, and when the jug is nearly full, throw in two tumblers of Cognac brandy, and one of old Jamaica rum.”
That sounds like nonsense, right? Right. So, I’ve simplified and the process and adjusted the ingredients and proportions for modern times. It makes a large cupful instead of a jugful, and I’ve replaced the cognac and rum with bourbon. (That said, feel free to double or quadruple the recipe if you’re making it for a crowd, and if you want to add a half ounce of cognac, it certainly wouldn’t hurt it.)
Old-School Bourbon Eggnog
1 large brown egg
1 cup milk, half and half, or heavy cream
1 tablespoon sugar
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
¼ teaspoon freshly-grated nutmeg, plus some for garnish
2 ounces bourbon
Add the egg, milk, sugar, vanilla, and ¼ teaspoon nutmeg to a blender. Blend well, until all of the ingredients are well incorporated and the mixture has begun to foam. Add the bourbon and blend again for at least 30 seconds. Serve immediately by pouring into a mug or large stemmed glass, or refrigerate for up to 24 hours. Garnish with freshly grated nutmeg just before serving.