Would you believe I was 21 before I had my first taste of eggnog? It just wasn’t a thing in my house, spiked or not. I knew what it was; always served in pretty mugs with nutmeg on top, rumored to be potentially boozy… it seemed like a romantic, perfect holiday drink. I just never had the opportunity to try it. So when I threw a holiday party my senior year of college, I thought, NOW. Now is the time when I will try this mysterious holiday drink. I bought a quart, brought it home, and promptly heated it up on the stove. I proudly served a steaming mug of the stuff to my roommate (with a little freshly ground nutmeg on top). She stared incredulously at her cup. “What did you do to it?” she asked.
“What do you mean?” I replied.
“Eggnog is not supposed to be hot!”
“It’s…. not? Are you sure?”
And just like that the romance disappeared for me. If eggnog wasn’t the steamy, boozy holiday drink I’d imagined it to be, I wanted no part in it. It would be 7 long years before I touched the stuff again….
Fast forward to Christmas 2014. I decide to embrace the eggnog as a recipe ingredient, and make the most kick-ass French toast with it on Christmas morning. I highly recommend this. I had come across the recipe as a way to use up leftover eggnog, but I bought the ‘nog just to make the toast! Of course then I was left with (you guessed it) leftover eggnog. Since I am physically incapable of throwing away unspoiled food, I had to find a way to use it up…. but the calorie-laden French toast was not an option during post-holiday austerity measures. Instead, I spent a little more time than I’d like to admit on Pinterest, experimented a bit, and settled on these two recipes that are so yummy, you might just buy the eggnog to make these in the first place! (and then, like me, still have to figure out what to do with the leftovers when you’re done.)
Recipe 1: Eggnog Biscotti
- 3/4 cup sliced almonds
- 1 1/4 cup white flour
- 1/4 cup yellow cornmeal
- 1 tsp baking powder
- 1/4 tsp salt
- 1 tsp ground nutmeg
- 2 T unsalted butter, softened
- 1/2 cup white sugar
- 1 large egg, beaten
- 1/4 cup eggnog
- 1 tsp rum extract
Lightly toast almonds until fragrant – watch so they don’t burn!
Reduce oven heat to 375 F.
Combine dry ingredients in one bowl and set aside.
Cream together butter and sugar until light and fluffy. Add in 1/2 (HALF!) the egg, reserving the rest for glazing later. Add in the eggnog and extract and beat until combined.
Once wet ingredients are well-mixed, incorporate dry ingredients and mix until crumbly. Dough will be dry, and you will need to press it together with your hands.
Form the dough into a log about 12 inches long and an inch high. Place on a cookie sheet covered in parchment paper, and brush with the reserved egg. Bake for 20 minutes, until evenly browned. Remove from oven and allow to cool for 10 minutes or so.
Reduce oven heat to 300 F.
Once slightly cooled, carefully slice log into approx 30-32 pieces. Arrange pieces flat side down on the same cookie sheet, and put back in oven. Bake for 10-12 minutes. Remove, flip each of the cookies over, and return to oven for another 10-12 minutes, until cookies are evenly crisp and well dried. No one likes soft biscotti.
This recipe tells you how to make a pretty eggnog drizzle for the top, but I couldn’t be bothered.
Recipe 2: Eggnog Wafer Pudding
Time: 5 minutes + chilling and softening time
- 30 reduced-fat vanilla wafers (or graham crackers, or gingersnaps)
- 1/2-1 cup eggnog*
- 1-1.5 cups skim milk*
- 1 box instant sugar-free Jell-o vanilla pudding
- 1 tsp rum extract
- nutmeg, for sprinkling
In one large container or 5 smaller ones (such as the white ramekins I used), lay down a first layer of cookies, using 15 total.
Prepare the pudding according to package directions, subbing 1/2 to 1 cup of the skim milk for the eggnog. Add in rum extract. Now, you need to assemble quickly, because once the pudding starts to thicken it is more difficult to pour!
Pout half the pudding over the first layer of cookies; layer with remaining cookies, and repeat with final layer of pudding. Sprinkle with nutmeg, and you’re done! Refrigerate overnight for best results, allowing the wafers to soften into the pudding.