This wonderful, rich and just a little tipsy Eggnog is the perfect “punch” for a Christmas gathering of family and good friends. There’s something about the magic of Christmas that brings Victorian visions to mind. Candle-lit rooms, and well dressed people embracing the blessings of the day. Young girls dresses in velvet and boys in their knickers. I love old-fashioned holiday celebrations. And I adore Eggnog.
There are times when I swear I am out of step with the world, that I belong in a bygone time with bygone traditions.
Tipsy Christmas Eggnog
6 cups milk
8 whole cloves
2 tablespoons plus ½ teaspoon vanilla extract
1 ½ teaspoon ground cinnamon
18 egg yolks
2 ¼ cups sugar
3 ¾ cups light rum
6 cups light cream
1 teaspoon ground nutmeg
Cinnamon for garnish, optional
Mix cloves, milk, ½ teaspoon vanilla extract and cinnamon in a saucepan and heat at low setting for about 4 minutes to bring the mixture to a slowly boil.
In a large bowl, whisk together egg yolks and sugar until fluffy. Temper egg mixture with about 1/2 cup of the hot milk mixture added slowly. Continue to slowly add hot milk until fully incorporated.
Pour the milk-egg mixture in a saucepan and cook over medium low heat for about 3 minutes stirring it continuously. DO NOT boil the mixture or allow eggs to curdle. Remove from heat. Wash the mixing bowl.
Strain the mixture back into the bowl to remove cloves and make a smooth eggnog. Let cool for about an hour.
Once cooled, stir in the rum, cream, remaining 2 tablespoons of vanilla and nutmeg. Cover tightly and refrigerate overnight.
Transfer eggnog to a decorative punch bowl and serve well-chilled. If desired, sprinkle top with a little cinnamon for contrasting color and additional spice.
Merry Christmas Everyone!