I absolutely love eggnog, but for some reason it tends to be more of an American than an English thing. That’s total madness because it’s basically custard with brandy in it, and who doesn’t want that? So I’m on a mission to convert the English to eggnog.
Opinion is divided as to whether eggnog should be served hot or cold, and personally I like both, so although this is intended to be a more elegant, chilled, eggnog cocktail, you could very easily skip the cooling stage and simply serve it warm. The eggnog is infused with cinnamon and ginger and generously spiked with brandy, and served with crushed candycane on the rim and a little gingerbread heart – the combination of the spices and the mint is unconventional but entirely delicious. See my previous blog post for the gingerbread recipe – you’ll need to cut out enough hearts for all your glasses, plus a few spares in case of accidents, and then before you bake them, cut a little notch into the side of each heart so it will sit on the edge of the glass.
|Your gingerbread hearts need to look a bit like this|
Note: if you’d like to serve this warm, once you’ve whisked the milk and cream together with the egg yolks and icing sugar, return the pan to the heat. Add the brandy and stir just before serving.
Gingerbread EggnogPrint Recipe
- For the eggnog:
- 350ml whole milk
- 120ml cream
- Half a vanilla pod
- 2 egg yolks
- 65g icing sugar
- 1 cinnamon stick
- 1 tsp ground ginger
- 60ml brandy
- To decorate:
- 6 candycanes
- A little lemon juice
- Gingerbread hearts
First, measure out the milk and cream, mix in a small pan, and then heat gently on the hob. Add the cinnamon stick and the ground ginger, and warm slowly, stirring every now and then, until the surface of the milk is starting to froth and steam. Remove from the heat and leave to steep.
In the meantime, whisk the egg yolks and icing sugar together until thick and very pale yellow. Remove the cinnamon stick from the milk mixture, and then whisk the egg yolks and icing sugar into it until smooth.
At this point, if you’re going to serve it cold, decant the eggnog into a jug, cover and place in the fridge for an hour.
Use a rolling pin to crush the candycanes, and then spread the crushed pieces in a nice even layer across a large chopping board or roasting tin. Dip a little sponge or cloth in the lemon juice and wipe it round the rim of each martini glass, then stand the glasses upside down, on their rims, in the crushed candycane mixture. Leave them to stand, and the lemon juice will help the candycane to stick.
Finally, gently turn the glasses the right way up. Take the chilled eggnog mixture out of the fridge and stir through the brandy, then divide between the glasses. Place a little gingerbread heart on the rim of each one and serve.