Monday, December 23, 2013

Not all Eggnogs are Created Equal

How it's done, can make all the difference. I heard this on the radio today:

Don't Knock The Nog Until You've Tried This One
We ran an unofficial office poll at NPR last week, via email: "Where do you weigh in on eggnog? Love it? Hate it?"

Those who hate it really hate it. They used words like "detest," "loathe" and "ick." They also used font sizes well above 14 point and broke out the red type to emphasize their distaste.

But the haters were in the minority. By about 2 to 1, NPR is an eggnog drinkin' kind of place, but — and this was emphasized by many — only if it's eggnog done right. That means: not too sweet, not too thick and just the perfect amount of booze.

Fortunately, we might be able to satisfy the lovers and convert some of the haters with Maria del Mar Sacasa's recipe for this seasonal concoction.

See, the author of Winter Cocktails was once an eggnog hater, too. Her first encounter with eggnog at a holiday party had her covertly pouring her drink into a potted plant. There was plenty not to like. "How it tasted," she recalls, "how awful the texture!"

Years later, while researching the drink for her book, she realized she might have been put off by eggnog done badly.

"I ran out to the supermarket and I bought a few of the eggnogs and I tried everything from the really cheap versions in the cartons to the higher end ones, and unfortunately they were exactly what I did not want in my eggnog," del Mar Sacasa says.

That is to say, artificially flavored, flat tasting, too sweet and too thick (these are similar complaints that cropped up in NPR's unofficial office poll).

So del Mar Sacasa set out to make her own eggnog.

"I tested a lot of recipes I found in books and in magazines and online and I did come across a few that had an interesting twist, which was adding egg whites whipped into soft peaks into the mixture," del Mar Sacasa says. "And this gave it this really beautiful airy, fluffy quality, similar to cappuccino."

After playing with milk-to-booze ratios and spice combinations, del Mar Sacasa believes she has the perfect recipe for basic eggnog. "This tastes like melted ice cream. It does. I promise." [...]
It goes on to offer two recipies. Follow the link to find them.


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