Remember: There's egg in holiday egg nog (Released: 12/15/95)
by Renu Sehgal, Office of University Communications.
STORRS, Conn. -- Holiday parties aren't complete without egg nog. But having a cup of good cheer must be preceded by food safety precautions, according to University of Connecticut experts.
''Remember there's egg in egg nog,'' said Kenneth Hall, professor of nutritional sciences. ''Raw eggs should not be consumed in any form because of the possible presence of the bacteria Salmonella enteritidis.''
Because of the potential danger, the American Egg Board has come up with a safe recipe for egg nog. Traditional egg nog requires anywhere from six to 12 raw eggs. The recipe from the Illinois-based Egg Board of Illinois allows you to cook the eggs first:
CLASSIC COOKED EGG NOG
In a large saucepan, beat together eggs, sugar and salt, if desired. Stir in two cups of the milk and cook over low heat, stirring constantly. When mixture is thick enough to coat a metal spoon with a thin film and reaches 160 degrees, remove from heat. Stir in remaining two cups milk and vanilla. Cover and refrigerate until thoroughly chilled, several hours or overnight. Just befor e serving, pour into a bowl or pitcher. Add any of the following: chocolate curls, cinnamon sticks, extracts or flavorings, flavored brandy or liqueur, ground nutmeg, fruit juice or nectar, whipped cream, orange slices, peppermint sticks, candy canes or Maraschino cherries.
For many recipes that requires raw eggs, you can find an alternative.
Fresh eggs will stay in the refrigerator for three weeks, while raw yolks and whites will last two to four days and hardcooked eggs will only last one week. Most eggs do not freeze well, but raw yolks and whites can be frozen for one year. Egg substitutes will stay in the refrigerator for three days after opening and 10 days unopened. Do not freeze an opened carton. A closed carton can last for a year in the freezer.
When preparing holiday feasts, Hall reminds consumers not to thaw meat on the counter because uneven defrosting can result in the growth of bacteria. Thaw meat in the refrigerator and, during cooking, use a meat thermometer to be sure you are fully cooking your meal. Stuff turkey and chicken immediately before cooking.