It’s almost that time of year, believe it or not. Well it is for me at least. I have been making my own limoncello for a few years now. The process takes about a month (sometime more pending on your recipe and your patience).
If you are not familiar with this beverage, let me fill you in on what you are missing. Limoncello is an Italian liqueur originally from Naples and made of Sorento lemons (though most any lemon will do). Most families have a proprietary recipe, and if the family owns a restaurant, their homebrew stuff is what you will be served. There are commercial versions available, but it’s more fun to make your own
1) Zest 10 lemons with a veggie peeler (minimal pith, large strips work fine)
2) 1 bottle of 100 proof vodka or (½ a bottle Everclear with and equal amount of water)
3) Place this in a large glass jar, and let macerate for 2 weeks.
4) After the 2 weeks, Combine 4 cups of sugar and 4 cups of water in a saucepan and simmer for 10 minutes. Let cool to room temp.
5) Add a second bottle of vodka (or the rest of theEverclear cut with another equal amount of water) to the lemon mixtur. Let macerate for another 2 weeks.
6) Strain off the lemon zest pour into sterilized bottles and place in your freezer for up to 6 months
To serve, chill a small cordial or port glass, and serve up. Great after dinner or in the afternoon on the patio.
We are not limited to just lemons: this recipe cna be made with oranges, peaches, pineapples or almost any fruit. A great party idea is to invite your friends over and everyone pick a flavor to make. In a month get back together with your new liqueurs, and see which one is the most popular. It’ll be fun to taste the fruits of everyone’s labor, no pun intended.
What else can you do with your new found libation?
ü Limoncello & 7 up (1 ½ oz limoncello and 3 oz of the 7 up over ice)
ü Limoncello Iced Tea (same as above but with unsweetened iced tea)
ü Substitute for most any fruit or citrus liqueur in any drink (makes a really zingy Margarita!)
1 ½ oz light run
¾ oz limoncello
½ oz raspberry liqueur
Build over ice in a tall glass. Garnish with lemon wedge and raspberry
2 oz Citrus Vodka
1 oz Limoncello
Lemon twist for garnish
Cherry for garnish
Stir with Ice and Strain into a chilled cocktail glass rimmed with lemon dust.
To make Lemon Dust pour about 1 oz of limoncello in a shallow dish and place in a warm dark place for a few days until hardened like candy. Remove from the dish and grind into a fine powder.
(For other recipes with limoncello go to my recipe page under liqueurs)
And, hey, I almost forgot……limoncello is great for all you cooks out there. Look it u on your favorite search engine or recipe site!