Posted by: Buzz | December 25, 2008

Grandpa’s Egg Nog

In honor of the holiday, I am offering my clan’s recipe for egg nog. This may not be precisely the drink that was George Washington’s favorite (although he would have called it “egg flip”). However, this recipe has been in my family for sixty years at least.

6 eggs, separated
3/4 cup sugar, separated
1 pint cream
1 pint milk
3/4 cup rum
3/4 cup whiskey

Beat the egg whites with 1/4 cup sugar, until very stiff. Then beat together yolks, cream, milk, remaining sugar, and liquor. Fold in whites. (Rebeat the whites at the bottom of the bowl if necessary). Chill overnight, long enough for the froth to float to the top again. Serve the liquid and froth together, sprinkled with nutmeg.

When I first made this for my in-laws, they couldn’t get enough of it. It’s very popular. I offered to make it for the physics department Christmas party this year, and I was initially was given the go-ahead to do it. But later, I heard back that it probably wasn’t appropriate–not because it would have too much alcohol, but because of the raw eggs.

The alcohol is pretty significant though. Made as written, this egg not is very boozy. My grandfather liked it that way. My mother makes it a lot weaker, with just 1/2 cup of relatively low proof rum. I usually make it with the full allocation of rum and whiskey. However, this is partly a reaction to my father’s inability to simply follow the recipe. Once he decided it would be a good idea to mix the nutmeg into the liquid. It was a disaster. So as a reaction to his incessant meddling, I make the recipe exactly as my grandmother copied it down. And it’s good.



  1. Sounds delish! I didn’t know nog had whiskey, this recipe would be a hit at our family functions.

  2. I’m willing to bet that 3/4 of a cup of alcohol will kill most contaminants. (Salmonella is pretty hardy, however, and I think that might be the worry.) Fifty years ago, people avoided egg nog because of the alcohol quotient. Twenty years ago, people avoided it because of the cholesterol. Now people avoid it because of the raw eggs. I say, live dangerously, at least once a year on Christmas!

  3. Hi Erica,
    Thanks for visiting my blog. I hope you don’t mind but I’m going to add you to my revised search engine. You have so many wonderful posts and I’m sure to hit upon them in the search engine. I could have used this egg nog recipe:) Happy New Year, Louise

    P.S. If you want a link to the search engine, let me know.

  4. It’s better with bourbon.

    We use raw eggs, but we know the folks who own the hens. Still, we called our state agriculture department to ask about salmonella and there haven’t been any egg related cases reported for years. (This is unlike raw milk and commercial hamburgers which are both more dangerous.) I wouldn’t go for the raw eggs with an impaired immune system, but we use the Joy of Cooking recipe which is much like this and love it.

  5. […] Grandpa’s Eggnog is our standby for alcohol during winter holidays. But this year, we wondered whether other made-from-scratch versions could compete with that favorite. Perhaps this recipe from Old Mr. Boston around 1941… Christmas Yule Egg Nogg […]

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