Me: “What do you mean? You’ve NEVER had eggnog before?”
Him: “No. What’s in it anyway?”
Me: “Sugar, cream, nutmeg, and eggs. Sometimes people add rum or brandy to it.”
Him: “Eggs? Like raw eggs?”
Me: “Yes, like raw eggs.”
Him: “So, you should drink it before working out?”
Me: “Definitely not.”
Him: “I get the egg bit, but what does the nog part mean?”
I sometimes forget that many of our holiday foods and customs can seem a little weird to him. But I did feel kind of bad for the guy — I mean he’s NEVER had eggnog! Like, ever in his whole life! Whereas in my family? We grew up on the stuff. It was one of those small, seemingly innocuous traditions that signalled the coming of Santa. Mom would pick up at least two of the litre-sized cartons at the grocery store, and my brother and I would bug her for a small glass in the evenings leading up to his arrival. In many ways, for me at least, eggnog is the taste of Christmas.
Eggnog, and quite a few other holiday delights are now off the menu for me. In choosing a Clean Eating lifestyle, I’ve accepted that. But what I couldn’t accept? My husband missing out on experiencing a piece of my childhood! So, for the past few mornings I’ve been tinkering away in the kitchen, refining a smoothie that healthfully mimics my memories of eggnog.
Oh, and before I forget: the nog part of this tale! Apparently, there are two schools of thought: it’s either a truncated version of “noggin,” which was the Middle English word for the mug it was served in during Elizabethan times, or it comes from the Colonial name for rum: “egg-and-grog,” (which was shortened over time to “egg n’grog,” which then eventually became plain ol’ “eggnog.”¹)
Personally? I’m putting my money on the mug theory.
- 2 Bartlett pears, quartered and cored
- 1 cup frozen pineapple chunks
- 8 dates, pitted and soaked for at least 30 minutes in hottest tap water (discard the water)
- 1 banana, sliced and pre-frozen
- 1/2 cup of probiotic, plain yogurt (gluten- and sugar-free)
- 2 tbsp. of ground flax seed*
- 8 tbsp. hemp powder (we use Manitoba Harvest)**
- 3 cups almond milk, unsweetned
- 1/2 to 1 tsp. ground nutmeg
*We buy our flax seed whole and then mill it in my “repurposed” coffee bean grinder. **Any plant-based protein powder will work. Consult package directions for amount per serving size. We use pure hemp to keep things gluten-free.
DIRECTIONS: Wash pears thoroughly, quarter, core and toss into blender. Add all other ingredients except for the nutmeg. Blend thoroughly, until smooth. Add a bit more almond milk if your blender is struggling or if you like a thinner consistency to your smoothie. Add the ground nutmeg. Blend until well incorporated. Makes 3 breakfast-sized portions, or 4-6 servings of a nutritious “après-ski” beverage.
NUTRITIONAL INFORMATION: 1,016 calories; 20.87 g fat; 169.1 g carbs; 42 g fibre; 106.6 g sugars; 46.9 g protein (All values are approximate and based on the full ingredient list.) Click here to view disclaimer.
- The natural sweetness and nutmeg, while in no way replicate the creamy texture of eggnog, are reminiscent of the real deal flavour-wise. Think of it more as an homage to eggnog.
- As long as you have your bananas pre-frozen (a natural sweetener and thickener), your dates pre-soaked (also a natural sweetener), and your flax seed pre-milled (a powerhouse of Omega 3s, fibre and other goodness), takes no time at all.
- Suggestion: Mill flax seed in large batches ahead of time and store in sealed Mason jars in the freezer.
- Source: TDW Kitchen Original