Making safe eggnog

Consuming raw eggs in eggnog can result in illness.

Homemade eggnog may be a holiday tradition, but it can also be a source of holiday illness if prepared with raw eggs. There is a risk of becoming ill if consuming eggnog that was prepared with raw eggs, because even if the eggs are clean and the shells are unbroken, salmonella bacteria may still be present.

According to the Centers for Disease Control (CDC), anyone can get salmonella food poisoning; however, older adults, infants and people with weakened immune systems are at increased risk for serious illness. A person infected with salmonella usually has a fever, abdominal cramps and diarrhea within 12 to 72 hours after consuming a contaminated food or beverage. The illness usually lasts four to seven days, and most people recover without antibiotic treatment. But, in rare cases, people can become seriously ill

If your homemade eggnog recipe calls for uncooked eggs, Michigan State University Extension recommends making some simple changes to make it safe to drink. To modify your recipe, use pasteurized eggs, pasteurized egg product or cook the egg mixture on the stovetop to 160 degrees Fahrenheit, and then continue to follow the recipe’s directions.

The Partnership for Food Safety Education provides a safe and easy to follow eggnog recipe.

Holiday eggnog

Ingredients

1 quart of 2% milk

6 eggs

1/4 teaspoon salt

1/2 cup sugar

1 teaspoon vanilla

1 cup whipped cream, whipped

Ground nutmeg

Directions:

Heat milk in a large saucepan until hot (do not boil or scald). While milk is heating, beat together eggs and salt in a large bowl, gradually adding the sugar. Gradually add the hot milk mixture to the egg mixture while continually stirring. Transfer the mixture back to the large saucepan and cook on medium-low heat. Stir constantly with a whisk until the mixture thickens and just coats a spoon. The food thermometer should register 160 degrees Fahrenheit. Stir in vanilla. Cool quickly by setting the pan in a bowl of ice or cold water and stir for about 10 minutes. Cover and refrigerate until thoroughly chilled, several hours or overnight. Pour into a bowl or pitcher. Fold in whipping cream. Dust with ground nutmeg and enjoy!

Calories: 135 per one-half cup. Yield: 2 quarts

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