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CHEF'S TABLE: 'Try the eggnog. It’s truly eggsquisite…'

This recipe for 'fireball eggnog' is sure to become one of your new favourite Christmas drinks, says chef at Georgian College

Well, this is the week. Christmas Eve is fast approaching and hopefully the shopping is done, and the tree is trimmed.

Maybe you’ve finished the special baking and the presents are wrapped and ready under the tree. I know this week in our house can be a little hectic. This is the point where I’m ready to slow down and try to enjoy the holiday spirit.

The news of the past week may have changed a few plans or given us pause to what we had hoped for our holidays but don’t let that deter your full enjoyment of the best of the season. Here in our house that means we light the fire, crank up the Christmas tunes and curl up with a rich glass of the “Nog.”

Now I know… it’s not to everyone liking. I mean really it took me years to truly be able to appreciate it for the festive libation that it is. Love it or hate it, it does deserve a place in the holiday repertoire.

Culinary history experts can debate the true history of eggnog but most agree that it is derived from the early medieval British drink called “posset”, which was made by combining hot milk that was mixed with wine or ale and flavoured with spices. Not something fit for our modern palettes, I’m sure.

The eggnog that we know and are familiar with really did not come onto the scene until the 1960s. It was then that cold, commercial eggnog became widely available in stores.

The internet is full of home recipes to try. Some are good and some are great.

A few years ago, it was decided that for our annual Christmas Eve pajama cocktail party we would serve a big bowl of home-made eggnog courtesy of a recipe researched by my son, Tyler.

Given Tyler’s age it was to be a non-alcohol version with the “Christmas Spirit” on the side for the adults.  

He was excited to participate in this mad science-like concoction. He laughed as we cracked eggs and poured in copious amounts of sugar and milk. He found it hard to believe that this mix would create anything that people would want to drink…on purpose.

He did an expert job of following the directions and assembling this big punch bowl of velvety smooth and luscious richness right down to the floating clouds of sweetened whipped cream floating on top.

To say that he was “pleased as punch” with his concoction would be an understatement. It was the talk of the party that year. It was an excellent addition and with a slash of spiced rum or green Crème de menthe made for some great Christmas memories for our guests.

If the brands of eggnog in cartons available at the grocery store are not really what you’re looking for, I have an “eggsquisite” local offering to suggest.

Our friends at Sheldon Creek Dairy provide some of the best natural, non-homogenized dairy products around. Since I can’t guarantee Tyler will make us a batch every year this is a fantastic substitute!

This limited seasonal offering is one of the best and sell out fast. It’s well worth checking out their website and grabbing some maybe in time for a New Year’s toast?

I’ll raise a glass to you and yours hoping you have a safe and enjoyable festive season. Cheers!

Here is a great holiday recipe from our friends at Sheldon Creek Dairy:

Fireball Eggnog

This will become one of your new favourite Christmas drinks. Cinnamon whiskey is a fantastic base for this classic holiday cocktail.

Ingredients

  • 1/4 cup raw sugar, for optional rim
  • 2 tablespoons ground cinnamon, for optional rim
  • 3 ounces Sheldon Creek Dairy Holiday Eggnog
  • 2 ounces cinnamon-flavored whiskey liqueur
  • 3/4 ounce amaretto liqueur, plus more for optional rim
  • Cinnamon stick, for garnish
  • Freshly grated nutmeg, for garnish

In a small dish, mix the raw sugar and ground cinnamon to a uniform colour and pour a small amount of amaretto into another small dish. Dip the glass rim into the amaretto then roll it into the cinnamon sugar.  

In a cocktail shaker, pour the eggnog, cinnamon whiskey liqueur, and amaretto. Fill with ice. Shake vigorously for 30 seconds.

Strain into the prepared glass.

Garnish with a cinnamon stick and dusting of freshly grated nutmeg.

Enjoy and repeat responsibly!

For more information on Sheldon Creek Dairy: https://www.fromthefarmer.ca