A Frothy, Festive Toast with Alton Brown

A glass of eggnog

Rich, frothy and laden with booze, eggnog is an inevitable part of the yuletide tradition. Mark Hayes/iStockphoto hide caption

itoggle caption Mark Hayes/iStockphoto

The holiday lights are twinkling and the frenzied shopping rush has begun. It's only a matter of time before you'll be gathered with friends and family with that yearly glass of eggnog in hand. Rich, frothy and laden with booze, eggnog — whether you love it or hate it — is an inevitable part of the yuletide tradition.

Many holiday revelers — presumably, those who've only tried a few sips of the supermarket variety — turn their noses up at the gooey concoction. Culinary wizard Alton Brown shows that a homemade batch of eggnog can be the best treat of the season — especially if you're using Brown's personal recipe.

The host of The Food Network show Good Eats gives a toast to the holidays with the festive cocktail in its original form and as a frozen dessert.

Jesse Baker produced this report for broadcast.

Eggnog Ice Cream

Andrea Seabrook, protected by a mitten, helps stir the eggnog mixture.

Andrea Seabrook uses a mitten to protect herself while stirring the eggnog mixture. Using liquid nitrogen, it freezes into a soft-serve ice cream concoction in about 45 seconds. (The recipe here will take several hours.) Jesse Baker, NPR hide caption

itoggle caption Jesse Baker, NPR

A frozen version of eggnog gives the holiday libation a refreshing twist.

4 egg yolks

1/3 cup sugar

1 pint whole milk

1 cup heavy cream

1 teaspoon freshly grated nutmeg

3 ounces bourbon

In the bowl of a stand mixer, beat the egg yolks until they lighten in color. Gradually add the sugar and continue to beat until the sugar completely dissolves. Add the milk, cream, bourbon and nutmeg and whisk to combine.

Chill the mixture in the refrigerator until it reaches a temperature of 40 degrees, approximately 4 to 6 hours.

Once chilled, process in an ice cream maker according to the manufacturers instructions. Serve as is for soft-serve or place in an airtight container and put in the freezer for 2 to 4 hours for traditional ice cream.

Makes 1 quart ice cream.

Eggnog

Culinary wizard Alton Brown exhales a breath of liquid nitrogen, used to freeze eggnog.

Culinary wizard Alton Brown exhales a breath of liquid nitrogen, used to freeze eggnog into ice cream. Jesse Baker, NPR hide caption

itoggle caption Jesse Baker, NPR

This year, ignore the cartons in the cooler section of your supermarket and make your own whipped-from-scratch version of eggnog.

4 egg yolks

1/3 cup sugar, plus 1 tablespoon

1 pint whole milk

1 cup heavy cream

3 ounces bourbon

1 teaspoon freshly grated nutmeg

4 egg whites

In the bowl of a stand mixer, beat the egg yolks until they lighten in color. Gradually add the 1/3 cup sugar and continue to beat until the sugar completely dissolves. Add the milk, cream, bourbon and nutmeg and whisk to combine.

Place the egg whites in a different bowl of a stand mixer and beat to soft peaks using the whisk attachment. With the mixer still running gradually add the 1 tablespoon of sugar and beat until stiff peaks form.

Whisk the egg whites into the mixture. Chill and serve.

Makes 6 to 7 cups.

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