Thursday, January 23, 2014

Quando Umni Flunkus Moreggnogi

Those unfamiliar with public television in the United States probably have never heard of the Red Green Show.  That's a true tragedy, as the show had unparalleled success with a fifteen-year run, and in our opinion, should still be running today.  (The success could not be paralleled because the show's trajectory was more of a random walk than a straight line...)

The Red Green Show has everything one could ask for in a sketch comedy masterpiece: a possum-themed van, a duct tape fixation, Canadians, a possum-themed lodge complete with latin motto, multi-colored suspenders, loads of old-timey wisdom, a possum-themed club, creative repurposing (what we call whatchagotamology), and bad puns.  If you're not familiar, you definitely owe it to yourself to check out a few episodes, which are readily available thanks to the magic of the internets.

Anyway, the Red Green Show debuted in January, 1991, which means that this month is the 23rd anniversary of arguably the best TV show ever.  This is the type of event that we celebrate with eggnog.  We had originally planned to make a possum-themed eggnog, but Katie vetoed that before we even had time to catch a possum.  So instead, here is a red- and green-colored eggnog.

Start with some type of red berry leftover from the holiday season.  For us, that was cranberries, but this 'nog would also work great with cherries, raspberries, strawberries, pomegranites, or all of the above!  For the cranberries, we had about 1.25 cups, which we added to a pot with 0.33 cups water, and cooked until the berries were mashable.  We started cooking them in the microwave, but they sounded like they were going to explode after a few seconds, so we switched to the stove (by Katie decree).  Also, if we had more cranberries, we would have probably doubled this amount.  The red color and cranberry flavor could have been stronger.

While the cranberries were cooking, we started same as always: beat six egg yolks until thick and bright yellow, mix in 1.5 cups milk, and microwave until the temp reaches 160 °F.

Then we mixed in 1 cup sugar and another 1.5 cups milk, then the mashed cranberries.  That's more sugar than usual, but the cranberries turned out to be pretty tart.

We had trouble breaking up the cranberries fine enough with just the egg beater (we keep forgetting to sharpen the beater blades!), and our stick blender is on the fritz, so we had to resort to Big Bertha for the homogenization.  If possible, add all the berries and just enough eggnog to make it blend right.  If you add all six cups at once, the cranberries take longer to blend, and you might have to clean up the kitchen before your next picture.

On second thought, that nog doesn't look quite red enough.  Let's add some sour cherry jam!

There...that's a little rosier!  Maybe we could have also used up some leftover red sprinkles to make it even more red.  Or we could have added other red-colored spices to help fend off the cold January weather. 

Now for the green part: leftover sprinkles from decorating Christmas cookies! (Since we're fresh out of mint and kiwis, and garnishing with parsley didn't seem quite right...)  And there it is: Red Green-themed eggnog.  Feel free to adjust or embellish this recipe as you see fit.  After watching a few episodes of the Red Green show, you'll definitely have some ideas for how to make it better.  Remember: if the women don't find you handsome, they should at least find you handy.

The recipe:
6 egg yolks
3 cups milk, divided into two batches of 1.5 cups
1 cup sugar
1.25 cups cranberries or other red fruit
0.33 cups water
0.33 cups cherry jelly (or jelly from other red fruit)
Green sprinkles to taste

Beat egg yolks until thick and yellow, then mix in 1.5 cups milk.  Heat until 160 °F, mix in sugar and then the remaining milk, cranberries, and cherry jelly.  Blend until homogeneous and red-colored.  Cool to room temp (or colder), pour into glasses, and garnish with green sprinkles.

How do you color your eggnog red?  Is the Red Green Show also your favorite PBS show?  Let us know in the comments section below!

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