The best egg nog, frankly, is uncooked. But so many people are concerned about the health risks of eating raw eggs that I’ve come up with an egg nog recipe cooked just long enough to eliminate most possible problems. It does produce a difficulty, though: You have to be very careful to keep the mixture from setting as you cook it. It’s basically a custard, but that’s not what you want.
- 1 dozen egg yolks
- 1½ cups sugar
- 2 Tbsp. vanilla extract
- ½ tsp. nutmeg, plus more to taste
- 2 cups heavy whipping cream
- 4 cups half and half
1. Whisk the egg yolks with the sugar, vanilla, and nutmeg together in a saucepan until creamy-looking. Add the cream and 2 cups of the half-and-half, and whisk until blended.
2. Cook over very low heat while stirring. Look for a temperature reading of 175 degrees on a meat thermometer. Don’t overheat or cook longer than needed to reach this temperature.
3. Remove from the heat. Strain the egg nog into the container you will store it in and add the remaining half-and-half. Refrigerate.
4. If you’d like to add something interesting (i.e., brandy, bourbon, or dark rum), a cup of the stuff should be about right. Serve with some more nutmeg (freshly grated, if possible) over the top.