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My Father's Egg Nog Recipe
Posting it here so I don't lose it again.
Every year before my father passed on, I would call him on Thanksgiving if we weren’t visiting him. For all the usual reasons, but also to write down (again) this recipe, because I’d kept losing it. He passed away in 2020.
This time last year, I emailed my brother, because I again could not find the recipe. He sent me this image.
A cell phone photo of a stained scrap of notes from a cook book dad made at some point, far back. And now the this arcane knowledge, a holiday magic spell nearly lost to antiquity, gets posted to the permanent record of all human knowledge spilling through the feed. It’s yours now, as much as it is mine, or his.
One Dozen Eggs
One cup of heavy whipping cream
One quart of half and half
Two tablespoons of vanilla extract
One cup of sugar (best if its finer grained)
The whole trick to this thing is to beat the egg whites and the heavy whipping cream separately, and whisk it all together in the end. It dirties a few extra bowls but it’s worth it.
Separate the egg yolks and egg whites.
Beat the egg whites into a meringue.
Combine the sugar, vanilla, and yolks and beat them. Then add the half and half and beat that too. If your sugar is too course grained it will sink to the bottom.
Beat the heavy whipping cream. My father used to say “beat it until it stands in peaks” but I’m not convinced this is completely necessary.
Combine everything in a large bowl and whisk it together, don’t beat it.
Garnish with nutmeg. If you’re adding alcohol, do this first, because you’re going to want to stir it like hell before you put the nutmeg on top.
The whole conceit here is that it’s simple and fluffy. The drawback is that it separates when it’s sitting around, into a kind of crazy layer cake of egg infused cream, whipped cream, and meringue, so you’ll need to whisk it back together every so often to serve it.
It’s quite good.