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Try egg nog or hot buttered rum

Time for a cup of eggnog. You can dress up what comes pre-made at the grocery store, or you can make your own for a richer, if less thick experience.

Add a little rum or bourbon or brandy, or leave it alcohol free.

Grate a little nutmeg on top and sit by your fireplace, or that television station that shows a nice fire and relax for a few minutes.

Here is an easy, basic eggnog recipe from Allrecipes:

Easiest Eggnog

2 eggs, beaten

3 Tbsp. sugar

2 1/3 cup low-fat or whole milk

1 tsp. vanilla extract

1 dash ground nutmeg

Blend together eggs, sugar, milk, vanilla and nutmeg, with an extra grating for garnish. Serve chilled.

This version creates a cooked custard with the eggnog ingredients:

Homemade Eggnog

6 large egg yolks

1/2 cup granulated sugar

1 cup heavy whipping cream

2 cups milk

1/2 tsp. ground nutmeg

Pinch of salt

1/4 tsp. vanilla extract

Ground cinnamon, for garnish

Whisk the egg yolks and sugar together in a medium bowl until light and creamy.

In a saucepan over medium-high heat, combine the cream, milk, nutmeg and salt. Stir often until the mixture reaches a bare simmer.

Add a big spoonful of the hot milk to the egg mixture, whisking vigorously. Add a spoonful at a time, whisking, to temper the eggs.

Once most of the hot milk has been added to the eggs, pour the mixture back into the saucepan. Whisk constantly for a few minutes, until the mixture is slightly thickened or reaches 160 degrees on a thermometer. It will thicken as it cools.

Remove from heat and stir in vanilla.

Pour into a pitcher and cover with plastic wrap. Refrigerate until cooled.

If it becomes too thick, add the mixture to a blender and add 1-2 Tbsp. milk; blend until smooth.

Serve with a sprinkle of cinnamon and a dollop of whipped cream, if desired.

Stores in refrigerator for up to 1 week.

Tastes Better From Scratch

A little something extra for you:

Hot Buttered Rum

1 stick unsalted butter

1/2 cup light brown sugar

1 tsp. vanilla extract

1 tsp. ground cinnamon

1 tsp. ground cloves

1 tsp. nutmeg

1 tsp. ground allspice

Pinch of salt

2 ounces dark or aged rum

6 ounces hot water

Cinnamon stick, for garnish

In a mixing bowl, combine butter, vanilla, sugar spices and salt. Beat until well combined.

In a heat-proof glass or mug, combine rum with 2 Tbsp. butter mixture. Top with hot water and stir until ingredients are well incorporated.

Remaining butter and sugar mixture can be stored in an airtight container in the refrigerator for future use.

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