A Hot Christmas Cocktail

Cheryl’s parents are retired and live in Florida and the weather always seems to turn colder whenever they visit.  I don’t know how they do it.  So far we don’t have any snow here in Chicago so they’re pretty happy but it is a little…um…chilly.  More than they’re used to at least!  One of my appointed tasks during their visits is to keep them warm with hot drinks.  Normally I whip up a hot toddy for them but since it’s Christmas I thought I’d do some digging and find a more Christmas-y drink.  The one I came up with was the Tom and Jerry.

No, it’s not the cartoon cat and mouse.  The Tom and Jerry is an old American cocktail which used to be a very popular hot Christmas drink.  It’s an egg-nog like concoction with rum and brandy, topped with some nutmeg.  It’s a lot lighter than egg nog, due to the whipped egg whites, and while the recipe calls for rum and brandy you can pretty much put any liquor you like in it.  Cheryl thought it was too strong so she opted for one with butterscotch schnapps and was quite happy with the outcome.  I got the recipe from Eric Felten’s How’s Your Drink? and it’s pretty easy to make.  You can whip up (literally) 4 drinks in about 5 minutes.  It’ll definitely warm you!

Tom and Jerry (makes 4 large mugs or 8 smaller ones)

  • ½ cup batter
  • 1 oz rum
  • 1 oz brandy
  • hot water

Batter ingredients:

  • 4 eggs
  • ¾ C powdered sugar

First make your batter.  Separate the yolks and whites.  Whip the whites until they form stiff peaks.  Fold in the sugar.  Add the yolks and whip until the batter is light and airy.

Fill a warm mug with the batter, add the liquor, then top off with hot boiling water and stir to mix.  Sprinkle nutmeg on top and serve with a spoon for stirring.

If the brandy adds too much of a kick, substitute something lighter and sweeter, like butterscotch schnapps, Baileys, or a similar liquor.

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