English Language Blog

Recipe for Eggnog in English: A Christmas time tradition. Posted by on Dec 25, 2014 in Culture

Eggnog in a glass.

A picture of eggnog with nutmeg sprinkled on top. Image by Isaac Wedin on Flickr.com.

It is Christmas today – Merry Christmas to everyone who celebrates! If you are in the United States around Christmas you are very likely to drink the traditional drink of eggnog this time of year. So today, let’s raise our glasses and enjoy this holiday with a toast to eggnog!

Eggnog is a traditional drink that is made most often around the holiday of Christmas. I have a recipe for this drink below, but before looking at that, let me tell you a little more about this traditional beverage.

Eggnog for sale.

Eggnog for sale at a store.
Image by dennis crowley on Flickr.com.

Eggnog is a milk drink, which is consumed in much of the English-speaking world around Christmas time. Eggnog originally came from England, but as the English traveled to new countries, like America, they brought this delicious drink with them. Americans love this sweet and creamy drink, so much that over the years we have made many “eggnog flavored” foods. These foods are only available around Christmas too. Some of the eggnog flavored food available in the United States are: eggnog ice cream, eggnog milk shakes, eggnog candy, eggnog flavored coffee, eggnog cake and cupcakes, and so on.

Eggnong cupcakes.

Eggnog flavored cupcakes.
Image by DixieBelleCupcakeCafe on Flickr.com.

Eggnog, the drink, is very rich and filling, and therefore most people can’t drink more than one small cup of it at a time. It is often consumed at Christmas celebrations, parties, and when decorating a Christmas tree. Most people buy eggnog at the store, but some people like to make it them self – just like it was traditionally made in centuries past in England and America.

Here is a recipe for eggnog in case you want to try this customary American and British drink at your Christmas celebration this year. Note: This recipe does not include any alcohol, but many people do add rum to their eggnog.

4 cups milk
5 whole cloves
1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
12 egg yolks
1 ½ cups sugar
4 cups cream
2 ½teaspoons vanilla extract
½ teaspoon ground nutmeg

1.    Mix together in a saucepan: milk, cloves, 1/2 teaspoon vanilla, and cinnamon, and slowly bring to a boil.
2.    Separately, in a large bowl, mix together egg yolks and sugar. Whisk until fluffy.
3.    Add hot milk mixture to the large bowl with the egg mixture. Add the hot milk very slowly so you don’t cook the eggs.
4.    Pour the newly combined egg and milk mixture back into the saucepan and cook over medium heat until it becomes thick (3-4 minutes). Do not boil.
5.    Strain the eggnog into a new bowl to remove the whole cloves.
6.    Let the eggnog cool for about 1 hour.
7.    Add cream, 2 teaspoons of vanilla, and nutmeg. (You can add 2 cups of rum at this point too.) Mix together with a spoon.
8.    Put in the refrigerate overnight.
9.    Enjoy!

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About the Author: Gabriele

Hi there! I am one of Transparent Language's ESL bloggers. I am a 32-year-old native English speaker who was born and raised in the United States. I am living in Washington, DC now, but I have lived all over the US and also spent many years living and working abroad. I started teaching English as a second language in 2005 after completing a Master's in Applied Linguists and a Certificate in English Language Teaching to Adults' (CELTA). Since that time I have taught ESL in the United States at the community college and university level. I have also gone on to pursue my doctorate in psychology and now I also teach courses in psychology. I like to stay connected to ESL learners around the world through Transparent Languages ESL Blog. Please ask questions and leave comments on the blog and I will be sure to answer them.