"Spirits" of the Holidays Eggnog

October 24, 2014

Test Kitchen-Approved

Author Notes: When I first came up with this recipe, my mother commented about the alcohol content. I felt compelled to remind her that I had never consumed any alcohol until I was in my mid-30s. Her reply: "Well, you appear to be making up for lost time." The first Christmas after she passed away, I felt extremely melancholy. My siblings all live in different areas of the country, and it would be the first Christmas we would all be apart. To brighten things up, I took out my mother's recipe book and got to work. I sent each sibling 12 packages, each containing an edible gift from her collection, along with a bottle of this eggnog. I included the original recipes and the memory (there was always a memory) attached to each. It was a lot of work, great fun, and NOTHING could have pleased them more!

This makes a very large amount, so take into consideration your refrigerator space for chilling. I like to bottle it and give it away during the holidays. You can always omit the alcohol, especially the rum. But, the apple brandy really works well.
Chef Lisa

Food52 Review: This recipe was a hit all around. I made a half batch, which yielded close to 4 quarts, so this is definitely a recipe for a party. It was super easy to make, and I love the use of apple brandy -- that's something I haven't found in any other eggnog recipes, and it definitely added a complexity and slight fruitiness to the nog that elevated it to fancy party drink. It had just the right amount of alcohol, not too boozy and not cloyingly sweet. It's balanced, surprisingly light in taste and texture, and very easy to drink.Annie "Smalls"

Serves: a crowd


  • 12 eggs, separated
  • 3 1/2 cups caster sugar
  • 4 cups heavy cream
  • 2 cups half-and-half
  • 1 tablespoon freshly grated nutmeg
  • 1 1/2 cups apple brandy
  • 1 cup light rum
In This Recipe


  1. In a very large bowl, beat the egg yolks.
  2. Gradually add the sugar, cream, and half-and-half.
  3. In a separate bowl, beat the egg whites to soft peaks, then fold in the cream mixture.
  4. Add the liquors and nutmeg. Stir gently.
  5. Chill for at least 24 hours.

More Great Recipes:
Cocktail|Cheese|Milk/Cream|Nutmeg|Serves a Crowd|Christmas|Winter

Reviews (10) Questions (0)

10 Reviews

Author Comment
Chef L. December 22, 2015
Madison, I put it in wide-mouthed jars so I can get a bit of the froth. It will keep refrigerated for up to a week.
madison December 9, 2015
How did you bottle it and how does it keep?
Author Comment
Chef L. December 19, 2014
To be honest, I've never used pasteurized eggs, but I would assume it would be fine. I'll try it next time.
Kt4 December 19, 2014
Do pasteurized eggs perform well for this?
Author Comment
Chef L. December 19, 2014
Jacob, I don't fold the whites in entirely. I leave "pillows" in the mixture. I do give a stir after it has chilled, but not much of one.
Jacob December 18, 2014
Maybe I am just missing something. But if you fold in the two mixtures how do you end up with a cocktail so wonderfully seperated?
Author Comment
Chef L. December 11, 2014
Thanks to all. The "story" is genuine!
inpatskitchen December 11, 2014
I love this! And what a wonderful story!!
creamtea December 2, 2014
I love the story!
mrslarkin December 2, 2014
What a lovely story. And the recipe sounds divine!