Eggnog is most definitely not a known commodity in Ireland. It may have originated in England, but this delightful holiday beverage shows up prominently in the American Colonial period. President George Washington even had his own eggnog recipe!  It became such a staple in the U.S. that you had events like "The Eggnogg Riot," which occurred at the United States Military Academy in December of 1826. Whiskey was smuggled into the barracks to make eggnog for a Christmas Day party. As a result of this riot, twenty cadets and one enlisted solider were courtmartialed -- and all because of their appetite for some proper eggnog!

Now, you can purchase factory-made eggnog in just about any grocery shop in America any time near or after the Thanksgiving holiday. Due to FDA restrictions and regulations, however, what you're getting has very little egg in the nog! Modern FDA regulations permit eggnog to contain less than 1% egg yolk solids. This is primarily due to concerns over salmonella contamination within the eggs, which is understandable due to the deplorable condition in which most modern-day egg factories keep their hens.  Unfortunately, the eggs are left out and in their place go things such as "modified milk ingredients" (whatever those are!), glucose-fructose, monoglycerides, and colourings.  C'mon!!

For those of us who keep our own backyard chickens (or at least have access to fresh, home raised eggs) however, these concerns are far less pressing, and raw eggs can be used.  That being said, it should be understood that raw eggs are used at one's own risk.

As I mentioned above, eggnog is virtually unknown to most folks here in Ireland. As an Irish-American now living in Ireland, however, I feel it my duty to introduce the wonderful goodness of this ultimate Christmastime beverage. I made a half-gallon of this nog last Christmas, and my friends were enthralled with the experience. I plan on introducing even more friends to this taste sensation this December. Kind of a fascinating example of how Irish immigration and centuries later reverse-immigration can bring new flavours and traditions into the Irish tradition!

This recipe can be used with our without the alcohol. I'm not a drinker, so we enjoy this sans-booze.  I know some folks really enjoy the alcohol, but it's certainly delightful without it. It's an easy process, and you'll never want to drink store-bought eggnog again after making your own. Obviously, your yield will be less without the addition of the alcohol.  

One more crucial note:

* Be sure to acquire the best, most fresh home-raised eggs if at all possible. This will make ALL the difference. *

Total Time: 15 mins, plus 1 to 3 weeks for ageing (if using the alcohol)  |  Makes: About 1 gallon

Game plan: If you are planning on including the alcohol, age the eggnog in the refrigerator for at least 1 week for the flavors to meld,


For the eggnog:

  • 12 large eggs yolks (reserve the whites)
  • 2 cups granulated sugar
  • 1 liter bourbon
  • 1 quart (4 cups) whole milk
  • 1 cup heavy cream
  • 3/4 cup Cognac or brandy
  • 1/2 cup dark rum
  • Pinch fine salt

To serve:

  • 12 reserved egg whites
  • 1 1/2 cups cold heavy cream
  • Ice (optional)
  • Freshly grated nutmeg


For the eggnog:

  1. Place the reserved egg whites in a very clean and airtight container and freeze until the eggnog is ready to serve.
  2. Combine the yolks and sugar in a large bowl and whisk until well blended and creamy.
  3. Add the the remaining ingredients and stir to combine.
  4. Transfer the mixture to a 1-gallon glass jar and tightly seal the lid.

To serve:

  1. The night before serving, place the frozen egg whites in the refrigerator to thaw.
  2. When ready to serve, let the egg whites come to room temperature. Place the egg whites in the very clean bowl of a stand mixer fitted with a whisk attachment. Whisk on high speed until stiff peaks form, about 2 to 3 minutes. Remove to a large punch bowl.
  3. Place the cream in the stand mixer bowl (no need to wash the bowl) and whisk on high speed until medium peaks form, about 1 to 2 minutes. Remove to the punch bowl.
  4. Stir the eggnog base with a rubber spatula to re-combine, then add it to the punch bowl. Gently whisk the eggnog together until just combined and no large pockets of whites or cream remain (do not overwhisk or you’ll deflate the eggnog). Serve in punch cups over ice, if desired, and garnished with grated nutmeg.

Check out more great recipes in The Wild Geese Irish Kitchen group

Tags: Christmas, beverage, eggnog

Views: 1106

Replies to This Discussion

Thank you for this recipe Ryan. . :)   Egg Nog is not widely available here in England either. The closest we come to Egg Nog is 'Advocaat.' Originally a Dutch egg liqueur which is often mixed with lemonade/lemon soda and lime juice to create a sweet drink called a Snowball.

Yikes ... that sounds a bit odd, Ruthie! :-)

I should also add that even many folks who don't think they like eggnog (thanks to most store-bought stuff being pretty crappy) will enjoy a glass of the REAL stuff.  My wife hated eggnog before trying the homemade version.  It's still not her favourite thing on earth, but she'll drink some of this good stuff when its on-hand.

I have to admit to not being keen on Egg Nog  as I don't like the taste of raw egg but my kids (all adults now) love it... I have tried home made Egg Nog  and store bought, and homemade tastes much better..My mother and Brother live in Indiana, so I get to try all the US culinary delights when I visit around Christmas time :)

Sounds delightful! 


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