After a long day of Christmas shopping, or preparing for Christmas day, nothing hits the spot like a good old fashioned egg nog. Couple this with a fruit mince pie and i'm in heaven. I've been using this recipe for years now, its a modified version of a Martha Stewart recipe. It's a little more time consuming than most egg nog recipes, but trust me, when you taste it you'll think the extra effort is worth it.
6 Large egg yolks
4 egg whites
3/4 cup sugar
3 cups full cream milk
1 tsp ground cinnamon
1 tsp ground nutmeg
6 black peppercorns (cracked)
4 cardamon pods (crushed)
Fresh ginger approximately 7cm long and 3cm thick, cut into 2mm slices
Zest of 5 oranges
2 pinches of salt
1 cup thickened cream
40g dark rum
40g cognac (or brandy)
In a medium heatproof bowl, whisk egg yolks and 1/2 cup sugar until pale yellow and thick, approximately 2 minutes. In a medium saucepan, bring milk and salt to a light simmer. Slowly pour hot milk mixture into yolk mixture, mixing constantly.
Pour yolk mixture back into saucepan. Add cinnamon, nutmeg, cloves, peppercorns, cardamom, ginger, and orange zest. Cook over medium heat, stirring constantly with a wooden spoon, until mixture is just thick enough to coat back of spoon and hold a line drawn by your finger, 3 to 5 minutes.
Pour mixture through a fine-mesh sieve into a large bowl; discard solids. Let cool, stirring occasionally, about 20 minutes. Add cream, rum, and cognac; cover and refrigerate overnight.
Whisk remaining 1/4 cup sugar and egg whites in a heatproof mixer bowl set over (not in) a pan of simmering water. Whisk until sugar is dissolved and mixture is warm (it should feel smooth between your fingers), 2 to 3 minutes. (For fully cooked eggs, a thermometer inserted into meringue should register 70 degrees celcius.) Remove from heat. With a mixer on high speed, beat until stiff peaks form, about 5 minutes. Fold into eggnog.
Pour into a mug, decorate with a dehydrated orange slice, and or a cinnamon quill.