How to Make a Tom and Jerry Drink

A warm glass of Tom and Jerry paired with Christmas cookies makes a festive treat.
A warm glass of Tom and Jerry paired with Christmas cookies makes a festive treat. (Image: Comstock/Stockbyte/Getty Images)

A classic cocktail, the Tom and Jerry was created by “Professor” Jerry Thomas, one of the founding fathers of cocktail mixology. Consisting of a rich "batter" of beaten eggs, sugar and spices, the Tom and Jerry cocktail was traditionally created in large batches to serve a crowd, but it's easily scaled down for two to share. Similar to eggnog, the beaten egg "batter," rich dairy, robust liquors and warming spices make the Tom and Jerry an ideal cocktail to take the edge off a winter chill.

Things You'll Need

  • Egg
  • Bowls
  • Brandy
  • Dark rum
  • Shot glass
  • Sugar
  • Ground cinnamon
  • Ground cloves
  • Ground allspice
  • Whisk
  • Electric mixer
  • Saucepan
  • Milk
  • Grated or ground nutmeg

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Tom and Jerry for Two

Crack open an egg and separate the yolk from the white, adding each to a separate bowl. Add two shots each of brandy and dark rum to the bowl with the egg yolk and whisk together until it reaches a thin, watery consistency.

Beat the egg white, a spoonful of sugar and a few pinches each of ground cinnamon, cloves and allspice with an electric mixer until stiff. Fold the spiced, stiff egg white into the egg-yolk liquor mixture. Divide this “batter” evenly among two mugs.

In a small saucepan, gently heat milk over medium-low heat, keeping an eye on it so that it doesn’t boil over. Remove from the heat once the milk begins to bubble.

Top off the two mugs with the hot milk and stir until frothy. Garnish with a pinch of freshly grated or ground nutmeg.

Tips & Warnings

  • Substitute bourbon for brandy if you don't have it on hand, or it's more to your liking.
  • If the milk is too rich for your liking, halve the amount of milk and substitute it with an equivalent amount of water.
  • Add a few splashes of coffee or coconut milk if you'd like to change the flavor profile of this classic cocktail in a subtle manner.


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