Homemade Egg Nog – Recipe #blogmas2015 Day Five!

Creamy goodness that will knock you on your butt.

Creamy goodness that will knock you on your butt.

How about a recipe?

I love eggnog.  Once December comes, you’ll often find me enjoying a nip of nog after work as supper is made or on the weekend relaxing.  It’s part of Christmas for me.  Usually in these instances though, I just buy a carton from the store and add a bit of my own “Christmas Cheer” to it.  I particularly enjoy a splash of spiced rum in mine.

For special occasions though, when I am entertaining a group (of adults – this stuff is for grown ups only), I like to pull out this recipe and whip it up.  So in the spirit of blogmas, I’m passing this recipe on to you.  Please keep in mind that this recipe will fill a punch bowl, so cut back accordingly if needed.  Though I can’t imagine why you would want to.

A reminder – this is best served chilled on the day it’s made.  Use the freshest eggs available to you.  This recipe is modified from an old “Company’s Coming” cookbook I believe.

Ingredients

12 of the freshest eggs you can find

1 cup + 2 tbsp granulated sugar

1/2 tsp salt

3 cups whipping cream (I never said this was good for you)

1 tbsp vanilla

7 cups cold milk

2 cups light rum

1 cup whiskey – I normally eliminate the whiskey and light rum and add 3 cups of spiced rum instead.

Sprinkle of nutmeg

Directions

Beat egg whites in a large clean bowl until they start getting thick.  Add the 1 cup of sugar.  Beat until they are thick.  I like to use an electric mixer for this step.

Whip those whites and sugar

Whip those whites and sugar!

In a second (very) large bowl, preferably one that has a lid, beat the egg yolks and salt until thick.

yolks

Beat those yolks baby!

Add the whipped egg whites to the whipped egg yolks.  Beat until they are completely incorporated and the mixture is thick.

Whites and yolks together.

Whites and yolks together.

In a third large bowl – there are a lot of dishes to clean up in this recipe – beat your whipping cream until it starts to thicken.  Add the 2 tbsp of sugar and the vanilla.  Beat that until it gets very thick.

whipped creamy goodness

whipped creamy goodness

Add your whipped cream to your egg mixture.  Do this slowly a bit at a time, stirring after each addition.

mixing

Add your milk, and your rum and whiskey (or just spiced rum – how I like it!), beat continually.

milk

milk

Oh my! There's the rum!

Oh my! There’s the rum!

Store this chilled with a lid on until you are ready to use it.  Serve in a punch bowl with a sprinkle of nutmeg.  If you don’t have a punch bowl, a large pitcher will do.  When you take it out of the fridge before transferring to the punch bowl, it’s best to beat it again, as the whipped portion will separate and rise to the top as it sits.  Refrigerate any unused portions (ha ha – as if!) for a couple of days at most.

Store bought egg nog will aways be second best after experiencing this!

Store bought egg nog will aways be second best after experiencing this!

The Magic of Christmas is in the Memories #blogmas2015 Day Three!

magicChristmas is about magic.  I truly believe that the magic that is Christmas comes from the memories.  Whether it be the memories you have from your childhood, from just last year, or the memories you’ll have next year because you’re making them right now.  Good memories or bad memories can change how you look at Christmas.  If you grew up having horrible Christmases, where your family fought every year, or for whatever reason your Christmases were crappy, that will often shape how you look at Christmas in general.

I was very fortunate to have wonderful memories of Christmas growing up.  My Pepere (my maternal grandfather) was the most wonderful man ever to walk the earth.  He was kind, gentle, loveable, and he loved his family so very much.  I learned lessons from him like: “always think before you speak.  You may just stop yourself from hurting someone else’s feelings.”  He was a wonderful person and though we lost him way too early 19 years ago, I think about him every day.  I especially think about him around this time of year, because of all things – Christmas was his favourite time of year.  He loved having his family around him, loved having the tree decorated, watching everyone opening their gifts, eating Memere’s beans on Christmas Eve (which I still make every year) and making breakfast on Christmas morning.  Eating so much through the day on Christmas Day that by the time Memere set the turkey down on the table at suppertime, we all faked it because no one was hungry.  He made every Christmas magic.  He passed his love of the holiday on to my Mom, and on to me.

My favourite Christmas memory while growing up was of him.  The first 17 Christmases of my life were celebrated at “The Bush.”  Sounds interesting I’m sure.  For those that don’t know, many years ago, Pepere bought a 10 acre piece of land out in the country.  He put on it a small cabin, meant for snowmobiling on the weekends.  We went up there every weekend when I was a child.  Memere and Pepere and I would go up early on Friday, and Mom and Dad came up later that evening.  We would spend the weekend there.  When I was about 5, Pepere winterized it and made it suitable for living all year round.  They moved there. It was my second home growing up and I loved it there.  They eventually started the business there, which grew, and grew, and about a year before Pepere passed away they moved from there to another place.  But “The Bush” to me was always a symbol of my childhood.

Anyhow, I digress.  Back to Christmas.

We would spend every Christmas at “The Bush.”  Mom and Dad would usually sleep on the pullout couch in the main living room/open area in the shack.  The wood burning stove was in that room so it was usually toasty.  The Christmas tree was set up in there too.  As a child, of course I was up before the sun on Christmas Day, waiting for everyone else to wake up.  I would get up, come out from the bedrooms and sit in Pepere’s chair about 2 feet from my sleeping parents watching the clock in the kitchen waiting for everyone to wake up, eying my loot under the tree.

Pepere was an early riser.  Usually up between 5 and 5:30 every morning.  Christmas morning was no exception.  He would come out from the bedrooms, and walk past me sitting in the chair and pat me on the head.  He didn’t even look down, he knew I’d be sitting there, waiting expectantly.  He’d chuckle a little as he patted my head, and keep on going, heading for the bathroom.

To anyone else, they might think “that’s your favourite Christmas memory??”  Yes, it is.  That pat on the head showed me he got it.  He understood how excited I was, he understood the magic of Christmas.  That pat on the head was like him saying “don’t worry Sweetheart, just hang in there another hour or so.  It’ll be worth it.”  What I wouldn’t give to have him pat me on the head again.  I miss him just as much today as I always have.  But I’m so thankful to him, he helped make Christmas so special to me.

Do you have any favourite Christmas memories?  Maybe you do, maybe you’re planning on making some new ones this year.  Either way, cherish them, use them to make new memories, and cherish those too.

Until next time.

What’s Your Favourite Christmas Movie? #blogmas2015 Day Two!

The best....ever.

The best….ever.

I love Christmas movies.  I have several favourites.  National Lampoon’s Christmas Vacation, Elf, Home Alone, The Holiday, just to name a few.  They really help to put me in the Christmas spirit, and I love to watch them year after year.  They become a part of our Christmas traditions.

My all time favourite Christmas movie, hands down, and probably one of my favourite movies period, is Love Actually.  Lets just for a minute put aside the all star cast.  This movie is just too perfect.  It makes you laugh, it makes you cry.  It makes you feel all warm and fuzzy and Christmasy inside.  It’s a series of different stories about a whole bunch of different people, that are all connected, in one way or another.  The cast is phenomenal.  Liam Neeson, Emma Thompson, Hugh Grant, Alan Rickman, Colin Firth and many more.  MR BEAN for crying out loud!  It’s warm, it’s funny, it’s perfect.  Great soundtrack too.

Re-watch this modern day classic with me this month.

If you have never watched this movie, watch it this Christmas season.  Please.  It’s so worth it.

“Just in cases…..”

 

 

*Image from IMDb.com

 

How Important is a White Christmas? #blogmas2015 Day One!

A white Christmas?  Or green instead?

A white Christmas? Or green instead?

Gosh I love the Christmas season.  I’m curled up in bed with Nicholas right now watching Rudolph the Red Nosed Reindeer.  I don’t think I’ve missed a year watching this….well, ever!
Just sitting here watching this thinking to myself about the weather and how mild it’s been so far this winter.  Here we sit on the 1st of December and we’ve only really had two snowfalls so far.  The accumulation with both was gone within a few days.  Living in Southwestern Ontario, we tend to get a really mixed bag with our winters.  Some are mild, with not much snow at all, some are insanely cold (-40 degrees Celsius for days on end) with metres of snow that piles up and doesn’t leave for months on end.  And everything in between.

I’m just going to say it – I really love winter.  I get excited when the snow falls, especially during the month of December.  I, like many others start to get a little sick of it when it gets to be February or March, but mostly I embrace it.  I live in Canada!  Some Canadians really need to just get over the fact that it snows here in the winter.  It kind of goes with the territory.  I am fortunate that I live less than a kilometre from work, so I don’t have to drive to work in it.  Joe works about a half an hour’s drive from home, and he hates the snow.  I sympathize, but I still love it!

To me, Christmas just isn’t the same without some of the white stuff.  Our family spent the Christmases of 1996 and 1997 on the beach in the Dominican Republic.  They were great holidays, lots of fun, but it almost seemed like Christmas came and went that year and we missed it.  The resorts had lights up, and served  big meals, sang the songs, and Christmas was in the air, but Christmas lights on palm trees just isn’t the same.

So forgive me if I get a little excited when it snows.  And forgive me for saying – I really hope we have a white Christmas this year…..and every other year too!

What about you?