It’s beginning to look a lot like…
Eggnog drinking time. So let’s grab a bottle from the store and hope there is nothing gross in it and drink up because raw eggs are scary and I’ve never heard of anyone making it so….
Wait a second! Let’s rethink this a little. I’ve never come across anything that tasted better store-bought than it does homemade… well maybe Oreo’s, but even these are a pretty good substitute. So what about eggnog? Well, personal opinion is that homemade is way better and it’s super easy to make.
Are raw eggs really scary?
Even before I knew what the term “crunchy” meant, and even before I cared about how healthy my food was I thought that all the paranoia about getting sick from eating a little cookie dough was, well, just that… paranoia. Now yes, you could technically get salmonella. And there are certain situations that can make that more or less likely.
To avoid salmonella:
Use eggs from a local trusted source.
I personally use eggs from my own chickens. I make sure to use the cleanest eggs. Eggs that didn’t get any poop on them before gathering. I also use the freshest eggs. Other great sources for eggs would from a local farmer that you feel has a clean safe operation. Having farm fresh, pastured, and locally sourced eggs makes the chances of any salmonella being present far less.
Personally, I’m not afraid of salmonella, my main reason being that I trust my eggs. I believe that Joel Salatin explains it best:
“So far, not one case of food-borne pathogens has been reported among the thousands of pastured poultry producers, many of whom have voluntarily had their birds analyzed. Routinely, these home-dressed birds, which have not been treated with chlorine to disinfect them, show numbers far below industry comparisons. At Polyface, we even tested our manure and found that it contained no salmonella.
Pastured poultry farms exhibit trademark lush pastures and healthy chickens with deep-colored egg yolks and fat. As with any movement, some practitioners are excellent and others are charlatans. Knowing your product by putting as much attention on food sourcing as you do on planning your next vacation is the way to insure accountability.”
Large egg farms are not glamorous. I know because I live less than a mile from one of the West’s largest egg producing farms. I worked there for a day years ago. And the experience was just that bad. One day was enough to know that I didn’t want to be exposed to the stink, the chicken dust, the burning eyes from chicken manure. My brother also worked there for a few days. He came home with ringworm that took years to remedy. Smaller, cleaner operations are guaranteed to have less disease and a higher quality product.
Now don’t get all excited. I only share this tip because alcohol does indeed kill salmonella. However, our beliefs at The Healthy Honeys is that alcohol is not a healthy choice, and we don’t endorse its consumption (I know, we are party poopers, but that is our stance). I have also not been able to find how much alcohol is sufficient to kill bacteria. But wouldn’t it be fantastic if that little bit we add in the form of vanilla was enough?
If you are still concerned and want to be cautious salmonella has far greater risks for young children, the expecting momma, those with weak immunity, and the elderly. So proceed with that in mind.
One more thing…
Raw eggs contain more nutrients.
According to the latest version of the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s nutritional database, if you compare the nutrient value of one large raw egg to one large hard-boiled egg you will find the following advantages to be offered by a raw egg:
- 36% more vitamin D
- 33% more omega-3s
- 33% more DHA (docosahexaenoic acid)
- 30% more lutein + zeaxanthin
- 23% more choline
- 20% more biotin
- 19% more zinc (source)
Keep in mind these statistics are based on commercially produced eggs, which generally contain less nutrition than eggs from pastured chickens.
More on consuming raw eggs here.
Eggnog has been part of my family’s Christmas tradition for as long as I can remember. It always came out a few times but especially on Christmas Eve. We always added Sprite to it to give it a little zing. As the Year’s past we quit drinking Sprite, and the last couple of year’s we have been making it instead of buying it. Just like when I was little, my kids are now excited for those moments when they see the eggs, cream, and the mixer come out. The tradition goes on, just slightly differently. Here is our all natural eggnog recipe.
- 8 large free range, organic eggs
- 1 1/2 C. organic raw milk
- 2 1/2 C. organic raw cream
- 1/2 C. plus 1 tablespoon Coconut palm sugar (like this)
- 2 tsp. vanilla extract
- 2 tsp. ground nutmeg
- 1 tsp. ground cinnamon
- dash ground cloves
- pinch of sea salt
- Separate the eggs, and set the whites aside. In a large bowl, beat the yolks with 1/2 cup sugar until they are thick and lighter in color. This may take a few minutes. Add cream, nilk and spices to egg mixture. Combine. In a different bowl, whip the egg whites and the 1 Tablespoon of sugar until stiff peaks form. Gently fold the whipped egg whites into the eggnog, until combined. Chill and serve!