whole foods and beyond....nourishing the body, spirit and soul

Monday, December 12, 2011

egg nog: christmas in a glass

christmas day will never be complete until i have my glass (or too many to count) of egg nog.  end of story.  i am lucky enough to have never had the misfortune of drinking store bought egg nog from those scary cartons that show up every year after thanksgiving.  i dont even want to know what kind of chemical mess these companies are trying to pass off as a traditional holiday drink.  so, i apologize to any of you reading this who have ever had the unpleasant experience of drinking said concoction and coming to the terrible conclusion that you dont like egg nog.  but not me...i have lived a life filled with hope, because every year on christmas eve my aunt would serve us homemade egg nog.  you can often find me on my knees thanking god that this tradition was always a part of my life;)  as we would walk into her house every year on christmas eve around 7 pm, paradise beckoned from the kitchen.  a crystal punch bowl filled with that oh so creamy and sweet drink was serene and peaceful as it waited on the center of the table for my siblings and i to get busy.  and to top it all off, my aunt would float huge chunks of french vanilla ice cream in the punch bowl to keep it cold.  genious!

now stay with me.  although the egg nog of yesteryear holds a special place in my heart, this egg nog will never find its way into my own kitchen, and certainly not into my child's mouth.  no, dimitri is far more lucky...not only will he grow up enjoying his egg nog, but it will actually nourish his body too!  miracles do exist!  leaving the SAD (standard american diet) world and entering one of raw foods or even whole foods may have you down, thinking that egg nog is just a memory of your past.  but i challenge you this year to make egg nog with real ingredients and enjoy it for the healthful drink that it was originally created to be.  if you prefer one that is vegan or raw, try this recipe, which i enjoyed through out the holiday season last year.

i tried out multiple recipes for egg nog, and after some adjusting and fine tuning, this is the recipe that comes straight from my egg nog lovin heart:

8 organic egg yolks
7 c raw milk (if you dont have access to raw milk, organic whole milk from a reliable source is your next best option, and if you are completely dairy free, half almond milk and half coconut milk should yield the same consistency)
2 c raw cream (if you dont have access to raw cream, buy fresh pasteurized, never ultra pasteurized.  a dairy free option would be coconut cream, although youd probably have to play around with the spices a little bit more)
3/4 c raw honey
8 cloves
1 tbs pure vanilla extract
1-2 tbs cinnamon
2-3 tsp freshly grated nutmeg

*gently heat milk and cream over medium heat.  add in cloves, cinnamon and nutmeg and warm on low heat for around twenty minutes stirring every couple of minutes.

*beat egg yolks until light and fluffy.  gradually beat in honey.

*with one ladle full at a time, temper the warm milk into the eggs while continually whisking. once the eggs have come closer to the temperature of the milk, very slowly add eggs into milk while continually whisking.

*once all the eggs are in the milk, take the mixture off the heat and keep whisking for a couple of minutes.  if the egg nog is on the heat for too long, or not continuously whisked, it will get too thick and more resemble a very loose custard.

* dip out the eight cloves and stir in the vanilla.  let cool completely before storing in the fridge.  letting it sit overnight will let the flavors really collide:)  this egg nog will last four days.

now go ahead and sit back while drinking your christmas in a glass!

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