[Guest Post on I&I] Homemade Lightened-Up Eggnog
In less than 24 hours, Jon and I will be making our way to New York City for a belated double birthday celebration! Even though I’m from (upstate) New York, I haven’t been to the Big Apple since I was a baby (aka I don’t remember anything) so you can imagine my excitement! At this time tomorrow, I hope to be enjoying a breakfast sandwich and crossing the Brooklyn bridge on the way to the Brooklyn brewery for a brew tour.
In the meantime, Jon and I have to finalize our wish-list of places to go, things to see, and restaurants to eat at. Oh, and pack our weekend getaway bags. With all of this stuff to do, thank goodness for Sarah from Curious Cuisiniere! She has graciously agreed to step in with a spectacular guest post while I’m busy getting travel-ready.
Hi there! I’m Sarah from Curious Cuisiniere, and I’m excited to be here posting for Leah today while she is away. One of the things I like to do on my blog is experiment with developing recipes that are lighter versions of your classic comfort foods. There are so many simple substitutions that can make dishes healthier, and we often take them for granted.
What I have for you today is one such experiment.
Come the Christmas season, I always begin to crave eggnog. It’s just one of those festive holiday indulgences that I love. But, it is an indulgence: cream, egg yolks, loads of sugar. It’s not something to be taken lightly. (Not to scare you from the real thing, because regardless of the contents, I’m the first to admit it is still quite tasty.)
When I decided that I wanted to make my own eggnog, I knew two things: I didn’t want to use heavy cream or loads of sugar.
The result is a light and airy eggnog with a deep brandy flavor that is splendid enjoyed warm, immediately after preparing. Left to chill overnight, it becomes thick and custard-like, more similar to the real deal. Either option for serving makes this a viable rival for the full-fat version in my book. And, based on my rough calculations (I am not a nutritionist and the numbers aren’t official in any way), this eggnog is 2/3 the calories and 1/8-1/4 the fat of the other versions.
Lightened Up Eggnog
Yield: 6 c
- 5 c skim milk
- 4 egg yolks
- 1/2 c white sugar
- 3 Tbsp cornstarch
- 3/4 c brandy (This measurement can be varied depending if you like your eggnog stronger or weaker.)
- 1 1/4 tsp vanilla
- Pinch of salt
- Nutmeg for serving
1. In a large saucepan, heat milk over medium heat, until it begins to smoke and froth slightly around the edges. (About 15-20min.) Do not let it boil!
2. In a large bowl, beat egg yolks with sugar.
3. Pour about 2 cups of the warm milk over the egg yolks, beating constantly. Once incorporated, pour the egg mixture into the saucepan (still over medium heat) and whisk to combine.
4. In a small bowl, measure 3 Tbsp of cornstarch. Using a spoon or cup measure, add a little of your warm milk mixture to the bowl and stir until the cornstarch has dissolved. Pour dissolved cornstarch mixture into the saucepan and whisk to combine.
6. Add brandy, vanilla, and salt, and blend thoroughly.
7. Continue to heat your milk mixture, whisking often to keep the milk from sticking to the bottom and the eggs from clumping. Heat until your mixture reaches the consistency of a thin gravy. This could take up to 30-40 min. (Keep in mind the eggnog will thicken considerably as it cools.)
8. Remove from heat and ladle into mugs and top with a sprinkle of nutmeg if you are serving warm.
9. For a thicker and more infused eggnog, pour mixture into a heatproof pitcher or jar with a lid. Refrigerate overnight. Top with nutmeg before serving. (If your refrigerated eggnog is too thick, you can always add a splash of milk – or brandy – to thin it down to your preferred consistency.)