WOW ~ Word of the Week ~ Brusher

WOW ~ Word of the Week ~ Brusher

It’s Christmas week, and that means the baking and candy-making frenzy is on in my house. I’m positively giddy that I have most of the week to pace myself and space out the kitchen to-do list, rather than frenetically cram it in to one or two days, per usual. I’ve added some new items to my menu this year: macarons, meringue cookies, and puff pastry.

My family may thank my eternal love of The Great British Bake-off. For better or for worse, depending on the outcome.

In the meantime, I’ve discovered a recipe to add some holiday cheer to those who drink as they bake, replacing the “add a little wine, swig a little wine” cooks usually practice, with this historically-based recipe from our northern neighbors. It’s not Regency, but it is from the Commonwealth.


A bumper, a full glass. See Bumper.

Back in World War Two, a unit in the Canadian military – don’t ask which one or from which branch; that way lies another war – invented a little toddy to keep the men warm and satiated during the long, cold nights. Moose Milk, as it came to be known, was as potent as it was filling.

Like most historical recipes, there are many variations, but most involve four main ingredients: a stiff liquor (or two or four), cream, egg yolks, and sugar. The variety of liquor was usually determined by whatever the military men making it had to hand, but recipes generally list whisky, rum, (and/)or vodka. Modern variations include Kahlua for the coffee lovers, and maple syrup for extra sweetness. So-called cheaters have been known to begin with everything from ready-made eggnog, to condensed milk, or even vanilla ice cream.

Moose Milk, courtesy Imbibe magazine.

Today, Moose Milk is still consumed at military gatherings, though it’s most closely associated with the navy. Moose Milk left the war behind; any military levy is a good reason to mix up the brew, and civilians have even embraced the drink, with alacrity, for their Christmas and New Year’s celebrations. Both people groups raise a glass with a mixture of delicious delight and national pride.

To keep the blog civil (hopefully), here are some recipes for making your own Moose Milk. Please note you should remain home to consume this formidable drink, and also stay away from any open flames. Also, consider reducing the amounts, since large gatherings are out this year.

Royal Canadian Air Force Moose Milk

12 Egg yolks
40 Oz Canadian Whiskey
40 Oz Rum
5 Oz Kahlua
10 Oz Maple Syrup
40 Oz Milk (homogenized – don’t use skim!)
40 Oz Heavy Whipping Cream (not canned)
1 Cup Sugar

Beat yolks until fluffy and well mixed.
Add sugar and beat mixture until thick.
Stir in milk and liquors.
Chill at least 3 hours. Best if can sit overnight.
Then: Whip cream until good and thick (canned whip cream will go flat, so avoid canned cream).
Fold in whipped cream (it will appear as if it has totally thinned out, but don’t worry, that is normal).
Chill for another hour.
Sprinkle the top with nutmeg and cinnamon.
Should be kept chilled because of the raw eggs.
This should not be a problem as Moose Milk disappears quite quickly.

Should serve a crowd of fifty….or ten pilots.
Source: DailyKos

Royal Canadian Navy Moose Milk Recipe

1.14 litre dark rum
1.14 litre Kahlua
1.14 litre vodka
4 litres of vanilla soft scoop ice cream
4 litres of partly skimmed milk

Mix gently until frothy with still a few ice cream lumps. Liberally sprinkle nutmeg over top. Enjoy and give vehicle keys to a party staying sober.

Source: Liverpool Ships and Sailors blog

Moose Milk t-shirt graphic from Red Pumpkin Studio. Go order one!

WOW ~ Word of the Week ~ Stir-Up Sunday

WOW ~ Word of the Week ~ Stir-Up Sunday

I missed it.

During the Regency era, the last Sunday of November had a fabulous name, and of course I’m over a week late. Better late than never?

Stir-Up Sunday

The last Sunday before Advent

This is the traditional day to make your Christmas pudding, but the term isn’t derived from the stirring of the pud, but rather the stirring words of the main invocation from the 1549 Book of Common Prayer:

Stir up, we beseech thee, O Lord, the wills of thy faithful people; that they, plenteously bringing forth the fruit of good works, may of thee be plenteously rewarded; through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.

The Book of Common Prayer, 1549

The modern Christmas pudding is credited to Prince Albert, consort of Queen Victoria, but the first Christmas pudding is thought to have been introduced by the first Hanoverian, George I (old Pudding King himself), way back in 1714. Families gather five weeks before Christmas to prepare the dish, but don’t eat it until the actual day itself. After lighting it on fire.

As you do.

Each family member must take their turn stirring the dish, making a wish while do so. The pudding must also be stirred by members in east-to-west progression, as the Magi traveled from the east to see the baby Jesus. Silver coins may also be added to the mixture, no doubt an idea conceived by canny dentists of history.

Advent picture, courtesy St. Margaret’s, London. Stir-up Sunday.

Although a week late, should you want to gather the family and make your own Christmas Pudding, let’s consult the 18th century chef de cuisine, Hannah Glasse.

A Boiled Plumb-Pudding

Take a Pound of Suet cut in little Pieces, not too fine, a Pound of Currents, and a Pound of Raisins stoned, eight Eggs, half the Whites, the Crumb of a Penny-loaf grated fine, half a Nutmeg grated, and a Tea Spoonful of beaten Ginger, a little Salt, a Pound of Flour, a Pint of Milk; beat the Eggs first, then half the Milk, beat them together, and by degrees stir in the Flour and Bread together, then the Suet, Spice and Fruit, and as much Milk as will mix it all well together and very thick; boil it five Hours.