Tom & Jerry – The Original 1862 Recipe And Improved Recipe

Tom and Jerry
Tom and Jerry

The History Of The Tom & Jerry.

Jerry Thomas most likely invented the Tom & Jerry since there was no reference to it till Jerry Thomas published his recipe. The cocktail is often credited with being created by him anyway. The story goes that he named the drink after his two pet mice, Thomas and Jerry, which he named after himself. Even Savoy credits him with inventing it, and the Savoy is pretty on point.

While the Tom & Jerry seems to fade in the 1930s, it’s still in the larger cocktail books up through the 1970s (I try to limit this project to only published literature from 1970 and earlier). In his 1972 book, Victor Bergeron even gives a single-serve recipe if one needs to be made on the spot. The Tom & Jerry is a very preparation and labor-intensive drink, so I feel this is relegated to be more of a home holiday party cocktail, and I have never once seen this at a bar ever.

When I first heard of this cocktail, I wondered if the iconic MGM cat and mouse cartoon Tom and Jerry were named after it. Unfortunately, no one knows if the cartoon famous Cat and Mouse duo Tom and Jerry were named after the drink, but it would be a weird coincidence. Joseph Barbara, of Hanna Barbara, wrote in his autobiography “My Life in Toons” how they came up with Tom and Jerry’s names. “We left the choice of names to chance. We invited studio personnel to write down pairs of names on paper and toss them into a hat. We shook the hat and drew Tom and Jerry, which had been submitted by an animator named John Carr. He won fifty dollars.” Maybe John Carr knew the drink from a holiday party; they are all long gone now.

What Is The Difference Between Eggnog And A Tom & Jerry?

Tom and Jerry are often compared to lighter eggnog, but it all depends on which recipe of a Tom and Jerry you are comparing to which eggnog recipe. If you compare a store-bought Tom and Jerry to store-bought eggnog, they taste similar. Today most eggnogs are made with cooked eggs and heavy cream, and the result is a thick, boozy custard. It’s a hefty drink, and a Tom and Jerry with heated milk are lighter with a similar flavor.

To compare apples to apples, if you compare a mid-1800s eggnog recipe to this classic style Tom and Jerry recipe, they are entirely different. This classic style of Tom and Jerry is more cappuccino-like than egg nog. The top has a nice foam similar to a cappuccino, but the drink itself is light. In an 1800s style, eggnog tastes more like a rich milk punch than today’s custard. The modern version of both drinks is similar, with the Tom and Jerry being a warm thinner version of eggnog, but the older versions of both drinks are very different.

What Is Tom & Jerry Batter?

Tom and Jerry’s batter is an egg and Christmas spice flavored mousse. It’s pretty good and doesn’t need to be mixed into a drink. You can make it yourself, or Tom and Jerry batter can be bought in stores during the holiday season in the upper midwest, where the drink is still pretty popular. I used to publish the original recipe on this site. However, I now use an updated one that makes for a considerably better drink while still being very similar flavor-wise to the original. Most modern recipes include butter and heavy cream and are much denser and almost eggnog-like. Mine does not. If the recipe is true to the classic and lacks a heavy fat ingredient, then the problem they are stuck with is using just warm water or milk, as meringue can not be heated so violently and rapidly. These versions taste fine, but I found this one that uses hot water to taste the best. The aroma is better; it sips better and has a more cozy feel to it. At its core, Tom and Jerry Batter face the same issue all egg-based desserts face when heated. The risk of curdling.

Most desserts try to solve this problem by cooking in a water bath so the egg doesn’t get too hot, and the original 1862 recipe could only use warm water and not hot, or else it would curdle. Most modern recipes try to fix this by adding butter or heavy cream since a cooked protein will bond to fat before bonding to another protein or stick with warm water or milk. While this keeps the drink from curdling, it either completely changes the flavor and texture or makes for a weak old, tasting drink. The solution I am using is an old baker’s technique to add a small amount of thickened corn starch, similar to American-style custard. American custards, cream pies, cream fillings, etc., are cooked at rapid high heat like any other dessert and do not curdle. This solution fixes the issue of curdling and lets the drink gets heated to a good hot drinks temperature while maintaining the drink’s original flavor and texture.

Make This Improved Tom & Jerry Batter Recipe.

I tried to change the original recipe and its ratios as little as possible. The only changes I made were adding cornstarch as a stabilizer and reducing the sugar to a more balanced amount. If you do not add cornstarch, then DO NOT use hot water. Only use warmed water or milk as the rapid heat will curdle the egg and make the drink lumpy.

  • 6 Eggs
  • 1.5 cups (360 g) of sugar
  • 1 tbs (15 g) Cornstarch
  • 1 oz (30 mLs) gold rum
  • 1/2 tsp (2.5 g) ground cloves
  • 1/2 tsp (2.5 g) ground allspice
  • 1/2 tsp (2.5 g) ground cinnamon
  1. Combine cornstarch and an ounce of hot water, stir till the cornstarch is dissolved and the mixture is thick, then set aside.
  2. Separate the egg whites and yolks into two bowls.
  3. Add the sugar to the egg whites and using an electric mixer (you would be crazy to do this by hand) beat the eggs into a medium peak meringue.
  4. Once you are done beating, still using the electric mixer, slowly add the thickened wet corn starch. The cornstarch can only be added after you are done beating the meringue. The cornstarch prevents the meringue from cooking when you add hot water and curdling.
  5. In the second bowl with the egg yolks add the rum, ground cloves, cinnamon, and allspice. Using the electric mixer again beat the yolks till they become lighter in color and runny.
  6. Add the egg yolk mixture to the meringue and fold to combine.

If you are curious, checkout and read The Improved 1860s Style Tom & Jerry Batter article and learn about the original recipe from the 1862 Bartenders Guide.

Advertisements
Advertisements

Download The Official Vintage American Cocktails App

Discover what classic cocktails you can make right now with the ingredients you have. Check out the Vintage American Cocktail app.

Tom And Jerry

0 from 0 votes Only logged in users can rate recipes
Course: DrinksCuisine: American
Servings

1

servings
Calories

192

kcal
ABV

10%

Total time

3

minutes

Learn how to make a Tom & Jerry Cocktail.

Ingredients

Directions

  • Drop batter into a ceramic or heat resistant mug. Batter recipe is posted above or click here to read it.
  • Add warm water and stir till the batter is completely incorporated into the water.
  • Lastly add the spirit and give a couple last stirs to finish mixing the drink.
  • Garnish with a dusting of nutmeg.

Notes


Make Cocktails Like A Pro

If you have ever struggled with a recipe or wonder why yours are not turning out like they do at the bar then check out my simple step-by-step videos. I will walk you through how to expertly build each drink so you get consistently great results.

  • Free and simple step by step videos.
  • Tips and tricks from years of experience.
  • Historically accurate and balanced recipes.


Hot Toddy – Delicious Classic 18th Century Style Toddy

Hot Toddy
Hot Toddy

The History Of The Hot Toddy.

Many of these old drinks that we still make today are hard to find information on—hot buttered rum, hot ale flip, buttered beer, toddies, etc. Most actual written recipes are from the mid-1800s and later. Books mainly were published for histories and stories, but skills and trades were just taught from master to apprentice. There were a few, but not like there is today. One tries to piecemeal as much as they can together.

In a 1769 book, “A Dissertation On The Oleum Palmae Christi,” by Peter Canvane mentions adding medicines to “warm milk punch, common punch, or toddy, in which a hot poker has been quenched.” as ways of administering medication to those who complain about the taste. (Total side note. All the older English writing has the long “S” character ( “ʃ” ), but I changed it to a standard “s” in the quote, it looks kinda like an f, but it’s just another symbol for s that we don’t use anymore. That’s why the Declaration of Independence looks like they spelled everything wrong.) In a 1783 fictional book “Smyth’s Tour of The United States” by J.F.D. Smyth notes that his character likes to “take a draught of Bumbo, or toddy, a liquor composed of water, sugar, rum, and nutmeg.” There was also a funny romance story from 1741 I found, where a beautiful lady walks into the kitchen and asks the lord of the house for a toddy. “Would you like it hot or cold? warm I replied.”

All silliness aside, the point I am trying to get at is that there is no actual formal recipe to make a toddy but the parts and qualities. There are as many toddies as there are people. The parts matter, so based on the works I referenced, let’s break those parts down.

  1. The first reference points to the colonial American way of heating drinks. Not by using a stove but by using a hot fireplace poker, often called a toddy rod or loggerhead. In a home setting, a stove probably was used as it was already fired up for cooking food, but in a tavern, it was more efficient to place iron rods in the already running fireplace. Rather than having a stove run all night to be ready for the occasional warm drink, they could dip the toddy rod into the drinks people request warmed.
  2. The second reference gives us the ingredient of the toddy. The four parts are water, sugar, rum, and nutmeg. Now any spice will do, but it is worth noting that only nutmeg is mentioned in the early 1862 Bartenders’ guide when adding spice toddies.
  3. The third reference shows us that toddies were served both hot and cold and sometimes warm. Now I am willing to bet that a cold toddy was not a heated one. Commercial refrigeration was not invented until the 1850s, so access to ice blocks was mainly limited to businesses. And while they did have ice houses that saved ice for most of the summer (some stayed in use up to the 1930s), something as special as the ice was not going to be wasted on a single drink.

So for this hot toddy recipe, I will stick to those points. It used only rum, water, sugar, and nutmeg. It was heated up with a toddy rod. Almost every recipe you find has lemon juice added it to add to its medicinal qualities, but since that is not traditional to the 18th or 19th century, I will leave it out and stick to the classic structure. On a fun side note, did you know the original name for the muddler was the toddy stick? That’s right, It was based on the pestle from the mortar and pestle but made of wood so it wouldn’t shatter glass cups. The shape was perfect for smashing together fruits, spices, and sugar cubes.

Do Hot Toddies Actually Help You Feel Better When You Are Sick?

So the short answer is, I guess… sure. The long answer is it depends on what ailment you hope to relieve. Western medicine has come a long way since the 18th century, but there are three reasons a person makes a hot toddy today other than tasting good. 1). When they have a soar throat. 2). When their sinuses are congested, and 3). It just feels nice to cozy up with one during the winter. The main health benefit of a hot toddy comes from honey; if you use sugar, you are missing most of the benefits of a hot toddy. Honey is pretty awesome nectar and has been shown to have anti-inflammatory properties. In some lab studies, if it is found to reduce pro-inflammatory cytokines, this combined with the warm steam from the drink can help reduce congestion as that is an inflammation of the sinuses. Or you can pop some Sudafed during the day and Benadryl at night, as those are some of the present-day gold standards of over-the-counter anti-inflammation medication.

Ignoring mechanical irritation of one’s throat like screaming a bunch, the most common reason for a sore throat is an infection, and the body’s natural response to infection is inflammation. So again, it’s honey with that anti-inflammatory response, or you could pop an ibuprofen or naproxen as they would be a more effective treatment. And the last point is it just feels good to cozy up with one, and it does. Being cozy makes you feel happy, but did you also know that nutmeg is a hallucinogen. The dose is so low that it’s hard to credit any effect on the brain to the nutmeg, but it does contain myristicin, making people trip in large amounts. Maybe that good feeling is just a psychedelic nut and alcohol-induced surface. Some people are susceptible to nutmeg and its active chemicals and get pounding headaches from even the smallest amount. So don’t ever use too much nutmeg, don’t use it to get high, and be careful as it can be dangerous in large doses. Make wise choices.

I will be using a traditional toddy rod, or as it is also called a loggerhead, to warm the hot toddy. A stove works too, but a toddy rod imparts a slightly toastier final flavor. If you are curious to learn more, check out this fantastic article that goes into early American toddy culture.

Advertisements
Advertisements

Download The Official Vintage American Cocktails App

Discover what classic cocktails you can make right now with the ingredients you have. Check out the Vintage American Cocktail app.

Hot Toddy

0 from 0 votes Only logged in users can rate recipes
Course: DrinksCuisine: American
Servings

1

servings
Calories

180

kcal
ABV

10%

Total time

3

minutes

Learn how to make a vintage style hot toddy.

Ingredients

  • 2/3 oz Honey Syrup

  • 2 oz Gold Rum

  • 5 oz Water

  • light dusting Nutmeg

Directions

  • Combine honey and rum into heat resistant or ceramic mug.
  • Either add hot water and stir or add room temperature water and dip a hot toddy rod in. Stir with the rod as the water boils.
  • Garnish with a dusting of nutmeg.

Recipe Video

Notes


Make Cocktails Like A Pro

If you have ever struggled with a recipe or wonder why yours are not turning out like they do at the bar then check out my simple step-by-step videos. I will walk you through how to expertly build each drink so you get consistently great results.

  • Free and simple step by step videos.
  • Tips and tricks from years of experience.
  • Historically accurate and balanced recipes.


Hot Buttered Rum – Classic Early Colonial American Drink

Hot Buttered Rum
Hot Buttered Rum

The History Of Hot Buttered Rum.

Adding butter to hot drinks was not new during colonial America. Butterbeer dates back to the 16th century, but hot buttered rum was an early American twist on this type of drink. In the Americas, rum and molasses were plentiful and reasonably cheap because of their proximity to the Caribbean. Rum was the first real spirit of the Americas, not whiskey. I looked high and low, but I could not find a hot buttered rum-like recipe till the 1860s with Jerry Thomas’s book. I scanned drink and food recipe books and eventually just started looking for any historical book older than 1860 that might have a recipe or at least mention a hot buttered rum. Trust me; I put more effort into this cocktail than any reasonable person should. I did find a mention of it in the 1826 edition of the Pennsylvanian Historical society. I mentioned how it is common for “good women” to have hot buttered rum, wines, and cordial water served to guests at birthing. And if the baby is unwell or fretful, a dose of spirit, water, and spices could help too. I found an 1855 British book called the Practical housewife, which gave a very similar recipe to the one provided but called the drink a buttered toddy. A book from 1830 named “Three Courses and a Dessert” mentions the hot butter rum and says how it’s a terrible meaty drink. I found this referred to as a buttered toddy a couple of times, but not much, the much more common name was still hot buttered rum.

Lord knows I tried, but the earliest I could find this drink mentioned was in the 1826 Pennsylvanian Historical society. The titles of most of the books that had hot buttered rum recipes were like the domestic blah blah blah, housewife so and so, or friendly neighbor such and such. They all revolved around the house and made no mention of going out to a tavern, which made me think this was a homemade cocktail. This ultimately means its history is a bit muddy, and there is no single canon recipe, so take this recipe, modify it, and make it your own have fun.

What Does Hot Buttered Rum Taste Like?

This is a fantastic drink spiced well with great texture and flavor. The butter doesn’t come across as heavy or greasy. It adds a nice creamy mouthfeel similar to gum syrup, egg whites, or a full-bodied wine. This drink is not weak either. You can feel the warm rum but the light creamy butter and pumpkin pie spices make it pleasant and not too strong. When I was younger, I used to think of this drink as more of an overly sweet, almost milkshake-like, but it doesn’t have to be. And again, since there is no authentic single canon recipe for this, the recipe I have here is an amalgamation of older recipes I liked. The sweetness and spice toned down a bit with more rum. The 2 ounces of rum helps keep the drink from feeling flat, and the sugar and spice level makes it, so the drink tastes like a cocktail and not a dessert. The hot buttered rum batter is great on anything. I sometimes add it to coffee, on toast, biscuits, pancakes, etc. Add a little more sugar, spice, or butter if you feel the drink needs it. Here is the recipe for the batter, but feel free to check out my article on Spiced Butter Batter.

Spiced Butter Batter Recipe.

  • 1/4 tsp (1.5 g) Ground Cinnamon
  • 1/4 tsp (1.5 g) Ground Nutmeg
  • 1/4 tsp (1.5 g) Ground Clove
  • 1/4 tsp (1.5 g) Ground Allspice (or 1/2 tbs: Allspice dram)
  • 1/2 tsp (2.5 g) Vanilla extract 
  • 1/2 cup (120 g) Brown sugar
  • 1/2 cup (120 g) Unsalted butter
  1. On low heat or using a double boiler, melt the butter and turn off the heat. Don’t cook and separate the butter. Only melt the butter.
  2. Next, add all the other ingredients to the melted butter.
  3. Stir till the brown sugar has thoroughly mixed in. Cover spiced butter batter and refrigerate.

This recipe will make about a cup (240 grams) of spiced butter batter mix, about 12 drinks. This is good on biscuits, too, and my kids love this spread on toast.

Advertisements
Advertisements

Download The Official Vintage American Cocktails App

Discover what classic cocktails you can make right now with the ingredients you have. Check out the Vintage American Cocktail app.

Hot Buttered Rum

0 from 0 votes Only logged in users can rate recipes
Course: DrinksCuisine: American
Servings

1

servings
Calories

220

kcal
ABV

10%

Total time

3

minutes

Learn how to make a Hot Buttered Rum.

Ingredients

  • 2/3 oz Spiced Butter Batter

  • 2 oz Gold Rum

  • 6 oz Hot Water

Directions

  • Drop spiced butter batter into a ceramic or heat resistant mug.
  • Add hot water and stir till the butter is completely melted and incorporated into the water.
  • Lastly add the rum and give a couple last stirs to finish mixing the drink.

Notes


Make Cocktails Like A Pro

If you have ever struggled with a recipe or wonder why yours are not turning out like they do at the bar then check out my simple step-by-step videos. I will walk you through how to expertly build each drink so you get consistently great results.

  • Free and simple step by step videos.
  • Tips and tricks from years of experience.
  • Historically accurate and balanced recipes.


Eggnog – Amazing And Simple Traditional 1862 Recipe

Egg Nog Cocktail
Egg Nog Cocktail

Some Variations On Eggnog.

There are countless eggnog recipes, and they all range from thick custard-like dairy drinks to non-alcoholic almond milk drinks and from really good store-bought to bad store-bought. A typical grocery store may sell well over a dozen different eggnogs during the holiday season. Although, you can have fun with eggnog when it’s homemade. Common homemade variations of eggnog are:

  1. Traditional no-cook eggnog. Like this recipe, most of your traditional eggnogs are not cooked but either shaken or beaten and drank right there or stored in the fridge for several days to develop more flavor.
  2. Modern cooked eggnog. Eggnogs started to get cooked due to the worry of food poisoning from consuming raw eggs. These tend to be very thick and custard-like and are the majority of most recipes today.
  3. Dairy-free eggnog. Typically made for lactose intolerance, these will replace the dairy with either coconut milk, almond milk, soy milk, oat milk, or other alternative milk. They also usually don’t have eggs, and most are also vegan.
  4. Egg-free eggnog. They are typically made for allergies, dietary, or just because some folks are grossed out by drinking eggs. Egg-free eggnogs exclude the eggs altogether and use heavy cream to provide a thicker texture.
  5. Vegan eggnog. Made for dietary and lifestyle choices, most of your dairy-free egg nogs are also vegan.
  6. Alcohol-free eggnog. Almost all store-bought eggnogs are alcohol-free unless bought at a liquor store. Typically purchased for their convenience, the option of adding alcohol or not, children can join in.

I love eggnog and have drank a ton of everything listed above. That being said, this 1862 Jerry Thomas recipe is the best eggnog I have ever had. THE BEST. This is not a sweet and thick recipe; it tastes like a slightly thicker milk punch. This recipe is ripped right from the 1862 Bartender’s guide. The only change I made was the addition of vanilla extract, cinnamon, and nutmeg. The original recipe did not have those ingredients, but I added them because they make the drink taste better and more in line with what someone expects eggnog to taste. This recipe is outstanding because it tastes exactly like you would expect eggnog to taste, but the texture is thinner and more like a standard cocktail. It may sound gross to crack an egg into your shaker, shake it up and drink it, but you will be blown away once you try this eggnog. Keep in mind that these are the original recipes that made eggnog famous.

Is Eggnog Cooked Or Not?

Most eggnogs are cooked at low heat, refrigerated for a few days, and taste like custard or melted ice cream. This is done to ensure that all the germs are killed that could potentially cause food poisoning and because most people are super grossed out at the idea of drinking a raw egg. Cooking also adds quite a bit of time to making eggnog, and it can be challenging to prevent clumping from the egg whites cooking hence why most buy it these days. Although if you add thickened cornstarch to the eggs before cooking prevents the egg whites from forming large cooked groups. Most recipes say the cornstarch adds thickness, but it prevents the proteins from forming large bonds and making the eggnog chunky.

This is not that kind of recipe. This one is fast and easy to make. No cooking, just a bunch of shaking. Most of the ancient recipes I found are not the cooked custard kinds but recipes like this one. You can let this drink sit in the fridge for a few days to develop more flavor or drink it right away.

As a word of warning, use pasteurized eggs if you can. Pasteurized eggs are still raw like a regular egg but with all the germs killed off. Pasteurized eggs don’t make big foamy egg white heads like non-pasteurized eggs do, but you can be sure they won’t get you sick. The FDA guesstimates that 1 in every 40,000 eggs has salmonella, which is super rare. Pasteurized eggs are hard to find, so you can pasteurize them yourself or roll the dice. If you have one of those fancy sous vide devices. As someone who has had Salmonella poisoning before, without going into detail, I will say it is one of the most painful things I have ever experienced. Again 1 in every 40,000. So rare, and if you get Salmonella, you’re much more likely to get it the same way I did by eating contaminated food prepared by someone who didn’t wash their hands. I’ve eaten countless raw eggs and have never gotten sick from eggs once.

The History Of Eggnog.

There is no definitive answer to where eggnog came from. Many guess it is a descendant of a medieval drink called posset, a milk and beer drink that would sometimes have an egg added for extra creaminess and flavor. The Oxford English Dictionary canonized the word nog in the late 1600s to mean a strong ale. It was probably used by the general population much earlier than that, but that’s when it was officially recorded. The first use of the word Eggnog started popping up in the United States in the late 1700s. England had a similar drink, but it was called an Egg Flip. Over time it became linked to Christmas and is not made much outside of the winter holiday season.

Advertisements
Advertisements

Download The Official Vintage American Cocktails App

Discover what classic cocktails you can make right now with the ingredients you have. Check out the Vintage American Cocktail app.

Eggnog

0 from 0 votes Only logged in users can rate recipes
Course: DrinksCuisine: American
Servings

1

servings
Calories

584

kcal
ABV

11%

Total time

3

minutes

Learn how to make the a classic Eggnog.

Ingredients

  • 1 dash Vanilla Extract

  • 1 Whole Egg White

  • 1/2 oz Simple Syrup

  • 6 oz Half u0026 Half

  • 1.5 oz Brandy

  • 1.5 oz Bourbon

Directions

  • Simply combine all ingredients in the shaker. Add ice to the shaker.
  • Vigorously shake till the shaker is ice cold and frosted.
  • Strain into glass to remove ice shards and garnish with ground nutmeg.

Notes


Make Cocktails Like A Pro

If you have ever struggled with a recipe or wonder why yours are not turning out like they do at the bar then check out my simple step-by-step videos. I will walk you through how to expertly build each drink so you get consistently great results.

  • Free and simple step by step videos.
  • Tips and tricks from years of experience.
  • Historically accurate and balanced recipes.