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What Is the Tom and Jerry Cocktail?
The Tom and Jerry is a warm, spicey, rum-based cocktail. The Tom and Jerry cocktail consists of a batter made of stiffly beaten egg whites, with egg yolks, butter, sugar, nutmeg, cloves, vanilla, and cinnamon folded back in. That batter is added to a mug and then rum, Cognac, and warm milk are incorporated on top.
What Is the History of the Tom and Jerry Cocktail?
The Tom and Jerry cocktail was originally a publicity stunt devised by a British journalist, Pierce Egan, to coincide with the 1821 release of his book, Life in London, or The Day and Night Scenes of Jerry Hawthorn Esq. and his Elegant Friend Corinthian Tom, along with the stage play that followed that same year, Tom and Jerry, or Life in London. The drink was a hit, and soon became a Christmastime tradition in the United States (principally the Midwest) in its own right.
Tom and Jerry Cocktail Recipe
Prep Time5 min
Total Time20 min
Cook Time15 min
For the Tom and Jerry batter:
- 6 eggs, separated into egg whites and egg yolks
- ½ teaspoon cream of tartar
- 4 tablespoons butter, at room temperature
- ½ cup powdered sugar
- ½ teaspoon ground nutmeg
- ¼ teaspoon ground cloves
- 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
For the drink:
- 1 heaping tablespoon batter
- 1 oz dark rum
- 1 oz Cognac or brandy
- Hot milk (hot water will also work)
- In the bowl of a stand mixer, whip the egg whites and cream of tartar until stiff peaks form.
- In a separate large bowl, whisk egg yolks and butter until well-combined.
- Using a spatula, fold yolk mixture into the egg whites, taking care not to knock out most of the air. Add spices, and gently fold to incorporate. Cover, and store in the refrigerator until ready to serve.
- To assemble the drinks, place heaping tablespoons (think one large spoonful) of the spiced batter into each glass or mug, followed by the rum and cognac. Top with the hot milk (or boiling water), whisking gently while pouring, until the drink is foamy and well-combined. Garnish with freshly grated nutmeg.
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