For some, it’s not really Christmas until they’ve had a glass of eggnog.
The frothy beverage is made out of eggs, sugar and cream and often flavored with nutmeg and spiked with alcohol.
The beverage originated as a wintertime drink for British aristocracy, Frederick Douglass Opie, a food history professor at Babson College, wrote in his blog “Food As a Lens”.
Only the wealthy could afford the ingredients and they added expensive liquors like brandy and sherry to keep the drink from spoiling, according to Opie.
Eggnog came to the U.S. colonies in the 18th century, where the drink was changed. Instead of adding the heavily taxed brandy or wine, colonists added rum — “the drink of the marginalized” — which was traded from the Caribbean, according to Opie.
What about the name — eggnog? Opie wrote that the term is a combination of two colonial slang words — rum was referred to as grog and bartenders served it in small wooden mugs called noggins. The drink first became known as egg-n-grog and later as eggnog.
SOURCE: USA Today