Eggnog is a delicious beverage that can make pleasant moments at home but it has a further use. It can be used in legendary cheap mix drinks with an original recipe or by pastry chefs as a necessary ingredient for achieving the right taste of desserts and pastry.
Would you like an ‘egg with spinach’ or ‘traffic lights’?
During the time we couldn’t enjoy luxury cocktails with rum, tequila or whisky, the creative Czechs invented recipes for mixed alcoholic drinks made of available ingredients. Eggnog was among the most widely used ingredients. Even today, thanks to inventions of amateur folk bartenders, you can try to create unique mixed drinks at home and they have very interesting names though.
For example, a cocktail made of a peppermint liqueur and eggnog was called an egg with spinach, a frog’s mucus or simply a spit. By following a special method of preparation with the same ingredients, you can create an alcoholic beverage called a military brain, a green brain or a sergeant because of its appearance. If we replace the green peppermint liqueur with red griotka, we get a drink called a brain. We can substitute griotka with cherry liqueur and that combination creates a brain in blood. And if we are brave enough, we do a triple combination of peppermint liqueur, griotka and eggnog and get a drink called traffic lights…
From petits fours to cakes
The low alcohol content and characteristic flavour make the liqueur to be widely used in pastry shops. There are many types of petits fours (e.g. koňakové špičky) and sweets where eggnog is an essential ingredient. And there are plenty of pastry products where eggnog adds another quality to it – cakes (e.g. Gugelhupf), slices, biscuits, pralines, profiteroles and so on. Literally, eggnog can be used in every pastry you can imagine.
This statement is confirmed by Eva Jurečková, a pastry chef based in Olomouc who makes amazing cakes. “Eggnog is a traditional ingredient for pastry chefs. It’s a necessity for many Czech petits fours or Christmas sweets. For example, I make an eggnog cream filled profiteroles or an eggnog chocolate mousse,” she said.
The use of eggnog isn’t subject to current pastry trends but its popularity traditionally grows with the Christmas season. “It’s associated with some traditional Christmas and Easter petits fours and sweets. The family tradition is also very important and these recipes are usually inherited from one generation to another. If recipes are approved by a family, rarely they are replaced by something else,” added the pastry chef.
The combination of an unmistakable flavour and original skills of a pastry chef can create visually beautiful petit four with exceptional taste. “Nowadays, pastry chefs are very creative and can combine seemingly unusual ingredients together to create a unique dessert or they can convert a drink into a dessert,” Eva adds. She prepared for you simple recipes – mini cakes and mini ‘věnečky’ (Czech profiteroles) with eggnog.