I love the sound of my husband’s snore.
Not the foghorn snore he makes when he’s sick. That snore is like fingernails on a chalkboard.
Nor do I love the grunting snore he makes when he’s lifted too hard. That snore makes me want to sucker punch him in his sleep.
The snore I love is his deep snore – the one that comes like a gentle wave – the kind that ripples through the house. I don’t hear it all that often. It’s not a snore that wakes me up. It’s the nights (like this one, right here) that it spreads gently through the house – like cake batter seeping to the edges of a pan or eggnog filling a glass in several large glugs.
Garrett wasn’t supposed to be home tonight. In fact, he wasn’t supposed to be back until tomorrow afternoon. But the hunting was bad (he brought home ZERO ducks for Duck Chili) and we have a Christmas tree to get and there’s basketball tomorrow morning.
So, he came back early (!!!) and we cuddled on the couch watching Ballers and eating an entire pan of parmesan roasted Brussel sprouts and broccoli. And because he got up at 3:30 and I got up at 7:00 he’s snoring in the bedroom and I’m drinking caramel tea by my computer in sweats and slippers.
Despite the fact that we’re adulating hardcore, we both have a few inner-child holiday traditions. I dress up Addie and Samantha in their holiday garb. (No joke. I have two American Girl Dolls from when I was little and I still get them out every Christmas.)
Garrett drinks eggnog. He starts the early ritual as soon as it appears in the store. And then mourns they day when he can no longer get the thick, sugary drink anymore. Which is why last year, I started making it.
This egg yolk heavy, cream-loaded extravaganza is sweet and rich and packed with fresh nutmeg. It’s not the boozy concoction that you make months in advance and let age. Rather, it’s a stovetop simmering, labor of love that can be enjoyed without getting tipsy. (Though, it does welcome a jig or two of rum…if that’s your thing.)
When I say this is a labor of love, I mean it! Stovetop eggnog requires constant attention from start to finish. Because if you burn the milk, it’s ruined!
2 egg yolks
1 cup heavy whipping cream
2 cups whole milk
1 cup sugar
1 TBS vanilla
1 TBS freshly grated nutmeg
In a large bowl, combine eggs, egg yolks, and heavy whipping cream. Whisk to thoroughly combine. Set aside.
Combine whole milk and sugar in a medium-sized saucepan. Stirring constantly over medium-low heat, warm milk and sugar mixture until it just starts to steam (roughly 8 minutes). Remove from heat.
Add one large ladle of the warm milk mixture to the eggs and cream, whisking constantly. Repeat with a second ladle.
(This process of slowly adding warm liquid to an egg mixture is known as ‘tempering’ the eggs. It’s essential to temper the eggs. If you heat them too quickly they can scramble, ruining your eggnog.)
Add tempered egg mixture to saucepan. Return to medium-low heat. STIR CONSTANTLY, cooking until mixture thickens enough to coat the back of a spoon (roughly 20 minutes). Pull off heat and pour into a large bowl.
(There is no exact thickness eggnog should be. It’s a matter of personal preference. For a thinner eggnog, pull it off the heat sooner. For a thicker eggnog, leave it on longer.)
Add vanilla and nutmeg. Stir to combine and then let cool on the counter. (Again, these seasonings can be adjusted based on personal preference.)
Pour cooled liquid through a fine mesh strainer into a separate container. Cover and refrigerate until fully chilled. Keeps for up to 1 week.