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'Tis the season for holiday drinks

 DO IT YOURSELF
opening

Creamy eggnog recipe serves up nostalgia

December 10, 1999
Web posted at: 3:48 p.m. EST (2048 GMT)

By Cathryn Meurer
Special to CNN Interactive

(CNN) -- A convivial holiday gathering needn't be elaborate to succeed, according to New York cook extraordinaire Rick Rodgers. But what it does require are one or two favorite holiday treats such as a creamy, old-fashioned eggnog.

"The most important ingredient at a holiday table is nostalgia. And home-made cooking, the smells of the kitchen, and a little extra effort make holiday meals extra special," says the New York City-based cooking instructor and former caterer.

So bring on the holiday beverages: mulled wine, hot cider, wassail, hot buttered rum and of course, eggnog in all it's old and new variations.

Rodgers offers a stream-lined recipe for the traditional "nog," in his newly published book, "Christmas 101 Celebrate the Holiday Season from Christmas to New Year's." The book also details an amaretto variation and a "New Wave" cooked-egg version which is even creamier than the old stand-by recipe.

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The only real challenge to preparing and serving eggnog is to keep it icy cold. And Rodgers has an easy, delicious solution to that problem.

"I float a carton of ice cream in it as the ice block," he says. "That will keep the punch cold and as it melts it will not dilute the flavor as an ice-block would."

If nog's not your cup of tea, perhaps a sip of Swedish "glogg" will sweeten the holiday. Judith M. Fertig includes a recipe for glogg -- Swedish Spiced Wine -- in her book, "Prairie Home Cooking."

Fertig notes that in some Midwestern communities settled by Swedes, hosts serve a non-alcoholic glogg to children to celebrate St. Lucia Day. On Christmas Eve, adults imbibe the wine-based glogg along with a ham baked with a sweet mustard glaze, anise-flavored rye bread, and rice pudding.



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RELATED SITES:
Rick Rodgers' Cuisine Americaine
Broadway Books
Christmas Recipe.com
Christmas Cooking
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