We know this recipe sounds sketchier than an email banking scam, but it’s anything but. It is our very best aged eggnog recipe!
Our Editor In Chief, Aida, first came across this aged eggnog recipe back when she ran the Test Kitchen at CHOW magazine, and she was immediately intrigued.
She didn’t grow up in a family that served eggnog during the holiday season and had certainly never made eggnog from scratch. Never mind an aged eggnog recipe where the eggnog base rests for weeks (or months!).
The Problem With Most Eggnog
Here at Salt & Wind Travel, we tend toward dessert recipes and cocktails that aren’t too sweet as such eggnog has never really fit in – because most recipes are too sweet, too heavy, and just too over the top.
Simply put, most eggnog recipes are unbalanced and make it, so it’s hard to take more than a few sips.
The Key To The Best Aged Eggnog
But then we tried this aged eggnog recipe, which we can promise is unlike any other eggnog you’ve ever seen. The key is aging the eggnog, which makes the flavors mellow and melds together.
The result is that, instead of the overly sweet, booze-filled stuff you’ve tried before, this eggnog is balanced and flavorful but still with a decent boozy kick.
And the addition of whipped egg whites and whipped cream just before serving? Well, that makes it also seem lighter and less intense than the eggnog you get in the carton at the store.
How Far Advance Can You Make Aged Eggnog?
We’ve heard of people aging eggnog for years, but the longest we’ve gone is one year. And, to be clear, that was one year where the eggnog was in a sealed container and at a constant state of 40°F or colder.
The result is distinct, an acquired taste as it ups the “eggnog” flavors, and the booze is almost undetectable.
We like it best when it has aged between 2 1/2 weeks up to one month. Our go-to schedule is to make a batch the weekend after Thanksgiving and let it age until Christmas Eve.
That few week seems to be the perfect amount of time to mellow it out so that it’s creamy, a bit sweet, and boozy, but not too much of anything.
How To Safely Make Aged Eggnog
Speaking of keeping things cold and safe, we have a few tips for you to make this eggnog safely.
Use Very Clean Equipment
Make sure everything you use, from the measuring cups and mixing bowl to the storage containers, is impeccably clean. The easiest way to do this is to clean everything in hot soapy water before you get going and then rinse it quickly with white vinegar, eliminating any grease and stabilizing the egg whites so they hold together better!
Use Uber Fresh High-Quality Eggs
This is still a drink made with raw eggs, so you should buy the freshest eggs and be extra clean when handling all the raw ingredients.
Don’t Serve Raw Eggs To Anyone Of Compromised Health
This a little reminder that raw eggs are never a good idea for pregnant women, the elderly, little ones (who, of course, shouldn’t be tippling on the eggnog in the first place), or anyone else whose health is compromised.
The good news is that eggnog has so much alcohol that the risk for contamination is minimal, and, yes, the alcohol also helps to make aging the eggnog safe.
Keep The Sugar And Alcohol As-Is
Finally, do not change the total amounts of sugar or alcohol in this recipe as they are the key to keeping it food safe.
We have found that this recipe needs to stay above 20% ABV, which works out to just over 5 cups of total alcohol for these types of liquor.
If you want to lower the sugar and alcohol, you’ll have to use pasteurized eggs or cook the base (by constantly stirring as you cook it over a double boiler until it reaches 180°F) to ensure it’s super safe!
Keep It Cold
As you let it age, you’ll want to tuck it into the back corner of your fridge where it’s cold but not frozen. If you have a refrigerator thermometer, keep it near the eggnog and make sure your refrigerator stays nice and cool (say 35°F to 38°F).
How To Serve Best Aged Eggnog
We like to serve this in a punch bowl with a big block of ice as part of our annual holiday party. Some guests like to drink it the whole night, while others have it as a liquid dessert.
How To Make An Ice Block
At least one day before serving the punch, arrange some spices like cinnamon sticks, star anise, and maybe apple rings (remember, whatever you add to the ice block will eventually melt and end up in the eggnog) in a small loaf pan, bundt pan, or baking pan.
Fill with filtered water to cover the fruit and then freeze until solid. Plan to make the ice block at least a day ahead, so it has plenty of time to set.
Other Recipes You’ll Like
Here are a few other holiday cocktails you may want to make and our most popular cocktail party appetizers if you plan to serve this at your next holiday party.
- Tequila Spiked Horchata Cocktail Recipe
- Spiced Cranberry Whiskey Sour Cocktail Recipe
- Pomegranate Ginger Apple Cider Punch Recipe
Go stock up on all your cooking essentials, then head into the kitchen and make this. Share your creation with us by tagging @saltandwind and #swsociety on social!
Best Aged Eggnog Cocktail Recipe
For The Eggnog Base:
- 12 large eggs very fresh and high-quality
- 1 3/4 unrefined cane sugar
- 1 quart whole milk
- 1 cup heavy cream
- 3 cups Irish whisky or Bourbon
- 2 cups dark rum
- 1 cup Cognac Armagnac or Spiced Pear Liqueur also works
- 1 pinch sea salt
- 1 cup heavy cream
- ice for serving
- nutmeg freshly grated for garnish
For The Aged Eggnog Base:
- Separate the egg yolks and white, then place the egg whites in a clean and airtight container and freeze until the eggnog is ready to serve. Combine the egg yolks and sugar in the very clean bowl of a stand mixer fitted with a whisk attachment and whisk until well blended, thickened, light yellow, and creamy, at least one to two minutes (the mixturer shoul dleave a ribbon behind when teh whisk is pulled out of the bowl .Whisk in all the milk and 1 cup of the cream until well mixed. Whisk in all the alcohol and a pinch of salt, then transfer to a 1-gallon glass jar and tightly seal the lid.
Age The Eggnog:
- Place the eggnog the coldest part of your refrigerator and check on it every few days. Stir it or carefully turn the bottle a few times to mix everything well. Let it age for at least ten days and up to 3 weeks.
The Night Before Serving The Aged Eggnog:
- Make the ice block if you plan to use it and place the frozen egg whites in the refrigerator to thaw.
How To Serve The Aged Dggnog:
- Before serving, let the egg whites come to room temperature for at least 20 minutes. Place the egg whites in the spotless bowl of a stand mixer fitted with a whisk attachment. Whisk on high speed until stiff peaks form, about 2 to 3 minutes. Remove to a large, clean punch bowl.Place the remaining 1 cup cream in the stand mixer bowl (no need to wash the bowl) and whisk on high speed until medium peaks form about 1 minute. Remove to the punch bowl. Stir the eggnog base with a rubber spatula to re-combine, then add it to the punch bowl.Gently whisk the cream and egg whites into the eggnog until just combined and no large pockets of whites or cream remain (do not over whisk, or you'll deflate the eggnog). Serve in punch cups over ice, if desired, and garnished with grated nutmeg.