Egged Noggin

Sometimes true love begins with the statement "I remembered that you wanted..."

Mike remembered that I wanted to try eggnog in Australia. "I thought I better get some before they run out," he said when he came from work today, his very last day of his very first year as a fully certified teacher (!), industrial-grey Coles sack in his hand.

"It was cheaper to get two," he added, anticipating my question.

"And this was the only brand," he finished. The man knows me well.

I had high hopes for eggnog from Australia, hopes beyond the expected use of sugar instead of high fructose corn syrup. This is a nation where grown people regularly drink milk of their own free will and even do so out in public without shame. Each supermarket devotes a wall to flavored milks: banana, spearmint, strawberry, and the ubiquitous coffee flavour. I've seen more advertising for "Chill" than for any soda. When our fridge was going to be repaired, the property manager's chief concern was where we would store our milk if we couldn't get a loaner. I felt confident that Australia could show me something special in an eggnog.

But when I opened the Pauls' carton, what flowed out was cinnamon-scented milk.

Really? Then what the didgeridoo is the regular eggnog going to taste like?

Guys, I don't think Alton Brown wants us to make our egg nog with skim milk.

Here I paused to take a time-out from voice recognition to open the other carton. Mike hates eggnog, so this mad science was all mine.


Pauls' regular eggnog taste like... like something where I'll come back to the fridge for a second swig, and then stand there thinking, "if I keep pouring it into my mouth, something will change." But nothing changes. I just have a coated mouth and busy mental engineers trying to wall off the tattletale neurons that keep screaming "I just drank potpourri milk! Twice!"

I can't fault Australia because shopping for eggnog is really much the same in the United States. Sometimes you get goblets of ancient Yuletide dreams; sometimes you get watery squirt. (And sometimes you get booze and don't care how it tastes.)

I assume other Aussie brands exist, and in the coming years I hope I find that the national eggnog scene boasts just as much frustrating variety in taste as I'm used to. Otherwise I will suspect that the milk people are truly the bullies of the dairy industry here, and I owe a half-apology to whomever is responsible for the saturation of cheddar on the cheese shelves.

This year's eggnog was Pauls, and Pauls has failed. Off to Pinterest to find 101 photogenic but probably thoroughly untested uses for leftover eggnog. Or, I guess, just holiday-themed milk. Google says eggnog quiche is a thing. Eggnog popovers? Eggnog cocoa? Eggnog omelette? I remember that Mike wanted some brownies...


22 December 2013 |






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