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Old school bourbon eggnog

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Merry Christmas!

If you have never had homemade, old school eggnog you are in for a treat.  If all you have had is store-bought eggnog, chances are you are not a big fan.  Homemade and store bought eggnog just don't compare. Essentially, eggnog is a liquid custard. This recipe is based on the original Joy of Cooking's "Eggnog in Quantity" recipe. Believe it or not, I cut the booze in half, and it is plenty strong. They must of been hardier in the 70's!  You don't need much, just a small tot of eggnog will be sure to get you in the holiday spirit.  Eggnog is even better when you  enjoy it with new puppies and a fire!

Not so healthy, but quite delectable

Until today, the last time I made eggnog was 1992. I keep very good notes as to when I make a recipe and how they turn out, but I was surprised I had lapsed 20 years between eggnogs.  The long eggnog hiatus may have been because consuming raw eggs, sugar and cream have gone a bit out of fashion. But there is a time and place for everything. In my book, eggnog at Christmas works very well. After receiving a request for an eggnog recipe, I knew immediately that the Joy of Cooking published the go-to recipe for killer nog. But just to be sure, I turned out a batch and brought it to a Christmas party, before publishing. All I can say, is it was darn well received.

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The raw egg debate

Many people are leery of consuming raw eggs, and with good reason. Salmonella poisoning is at best, no fun.  I did a little research on the safety of consuming raw eggs.  In the US, 1 in 20,000 eggs are contaminated with salmonella. Statistically, as this recipe calls for a dozen raw eggs, the risk of salmonella poisoning would be 1 in 1,667. Still remote, but getting closer to home. So you have three eggnog choices:

  1. Gently cook the eggs, which is another recipe altogether
  2. Roll the dice
  3. Use pasteurized eggs

For this recipe, I opt for #3. By using pasteurized eggs you greatly reduce the risk of salmonella poisoning. Look for the little red P stamped on the egg to verify that you are using pasteurized eggs.

Tips for the perfect eggnong

  1. See my post on separating and whipping eggs.  It is very important that you do not get any yolk into your egg whites or your whites will not stiffen properly.
  2. Make sure you sift your powdered sugar.
  3. Maker's Mark bourbon works very very well.
  4. After you go through all the hard work to make homemade eggnog, make sure you use freshly grated nutmeg and not the bottled pre-grated kind. There is a world of difference.

Happy Holidays!


Old school bourbon eggnog

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If you are in the mood for an old time holiday treat, you can’t beat old fashioned eggnog. Essentially, eggnog is a liquid custard. This recipe is based on the original Joy of Cooking’s “Eggnog in Quantity” recipe.


  • 12 pasteurized egg yolks
  • 1 pound confectioner’s sugar (1 box powdered sugar)
  • 2 cups Maker’s Mark bourbon
  • 2 quarts whipping cream
  • 12 pasteurized eggwhites
  • 12 t freshly grated nutmeg


  1. Separate the egg whites and egg yolks very carefully, making sure there is absolutely no yolk in the whites. Cover the egg whites and reserve int the refrigerator.
  2. Using an electric mixer, beat egg yolks for about 4 minutes, until they are light in color.
  3. Sift the powdered sugar. If you don’t have a sifter, pour it into a a mesh sieve, and push it through using a wooden spoon. Don’t skip this step or you will have a lumpy egg and sugar mixture.
  4. Slowly add sifted sugar to the egg yolks, beating constantly. Scrape down the sides of the bowl periodically.
  5. When all the sugar is incorporated, gradually beat in the bourbon. Let the mixture stand for an hour. This helps eliminate an “eggy’ taste and odor.
  6. Beat in cream. Refrigerate for 3 hours.
  7. Whip the egg whites until they are stiff. Fold in to egg yolk, sugar and booze mixture. Stir in freshly grated nutmeg.
  8. Enjoy!







  1. Janis Allen says:

    This is the most delicious eggnog I have ever tasted!!! Thank you for posting the recipe!

    1. Kim says:

      I’m so glad you enjoyed it!

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