Week 30: It's Lovely Weather for an Eggnog Together
Welcome to Winter 2020/2021! There is even some snow on the ground to make it feel real. Moutoux has officially welcomed Jules who will be a full-time worker on the farm this winter. Casey is also working part time as she takes classes. Winter is slower on the farm but there is always something to be done. The fields have all been planted with cover crops, an important process to add organic matter and nutrients back into the soil. The last of the outdoor kale was harvested a few weeks ago and the new hoop house tunnel is pumping out some beautiful greens. The crew transplanted more lettuce in the tunnel and seeded some more kale, kale mix and bunching onions. Those will be planted in the tunnel before we know it!
As we head into the next 3 big holidays of the season – Christmas (December 25th), Kwanzaa (December 26th to January 1st), and New Year Day (January 1st) – all of them have a strong connection to food and feasting. Take look back at some popular blog posts for some delicious recipes.
With all the holiday feasting, we can’t leave out the holiday drinks! With access to top-shelf eggs and milk from Moutoux Orchard, eggnog certainly comes to mind. If you think you do not like eggnog, try making it from scratch. Like most things, the store-bought just cannot compare to the real deal. And although eggnog is a true American holiday tradition, there are recipe variations of this boozy cocktail across many regions of the world! Some recipes lose the egg, some lose the milk, but all are creamy, warming and decadent. Nice and rosy and comfy cozy are we. Happy holidays!
4 egg yolks
4 egg whites
1/3 cup sugar, plus 1 Tbsp
2 cups whole milk
1 cup heavy cream
3 oz. bourbon (optional)
1 tsp freshly grated nutmeg
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 it is completely dissolved. Add the milk, cream, bourbon, and nutmeg and stir to combine.
Place the egg whites in the bowl of a stand mixer and beat to soft peaks. With the mixer still running gradually add the one tablespoon of sugar and beat until stiff peaks form.
Whisk the egg whites into the mixture. Chill and serve.
Notes: Yields 6 to 7 cups.
ROMPOPE (LATIN EGGNOG)
8 cups milk
1 cup sugar
1 tsp vanilla
1 orange peel
8 to 12 egg yolks (adjust based on the level of thickness and richness that you prefer)
2 cups cream or half and half
1 cup condensed milk
Aguardiente (a rum-like sugarcane spirit) to taste; recommend 1 cup per 4.25 cups of Rompope for lighter version, 2 cups for strong version
Combine the milk with the sugar, vanilla and orange peel in a pot and bring to a boil, cook on low for about 30 minutes, stir occasionally to prevent it from boiling over.
Blend the egg yolks with the condensed milk until well mixed. You can also use a whisk and mix them in a bowl until creamy. Add the cream at the end and blend gently to keep it from getting too thick or use a whisk to mix in the cream or half and half.
Add a cup of the milk into the egg yolk mix and stir well, then slowly add the egg yolk mix to the milk and stir well. Cook over low medium heat, stirring consistently, until the mix starts to thicken, and do not let boil.
Cool down completely and then stir in the aguardiente. If you want it less thick add additional milk, cream or half and half.
Refrigerate until ready to serve. Can be served warm or cold based on your preference.
Decorate glass rims with condensed milk and sugar. You can also sprinkle some ground cinnamon over the drinks when serving.
Notes: Makes 10 cups.
HOMEMADE HOT CHOCOLATE
4 cups milk
¼ cup unsweetened cocoa powder
¼ cup granulated sugar
½ cup bittersweet or semisweet chocolate chips or chopped chocolate bar
¼ tsp pure vanilla extract
Place milk, cocoa powder, and sugar in a small saucepan. Heat over medium/medium-low heat, whisking frequently, until warm (but not boiling).
Add chocolate chips and whisk constantly until the chocolate chips melt and distribute evenly into the milk.
Whisk in vanilla extract, serve immediately.
Notes: Makes 4 servings. The variations are endless – Add half and half to make it extra rich; use bittersweet/dark chocolate chips to make it less sweet; use milk after cream removed (or skim milk) for a healthier version; add cinnamon, peppermint extract, a shot of expresso, or a drizzle of caramel sauce for a flavored hot chocolate; add Kahlua, Peppermint Schnapps, cinnamon liqueur or marshmallow vodka for a boozy drink. https://celebratingsweets.com/homemade-hot-chocolate/