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Saturday, 4 May 2013
Limoncello: The Rest of the Story

Limoncello- the rest of the Story

In my post on April 20, 2013, Lemons-Part 1: The Zest, I talked about making an Italian liqueur called, Limoncello. The recipe is included in that post. And I promised pictures when my final product was done.

I first had Limoncello by accident during a tour in Italy. I say “by accident” because the waiter asked our group of diners if we wanted some after dinner. Now, we were sitting with two very comical sisters from New York (we later nicknamed them the “Andiamo Sisters” because they were always up for anything). Already over-tired on day one from a transatlantic flight, it was our first group orientation dinner out. The wine with dinner had gone to our heads. We all thought he said “lemon jello”. Looking at each other quizzically, we all said “sure.” Why they served lemon jello in Italy was beyond all of us—we were soon educated to our mistake.

My sister, Kathy, reminded me that she first heard about the beverage in the movie “Under the Tuscan Sun.” I'd forgotten about that part in the movie where Diane Lane's character falls in love with an Italian man whose family business is making “Limoncello.”

So—here is what my 50 lemons of zest peelings incubated with vodka yielded: 3.5 liters of golden, lemon-infused vodka.




Having multiplied the recipe by 3.5 times, I had to make the simple syrup in a stock pot to accommodate the volume. After it cooled to room temperature, I added the vodka. I can tell you at this point my kitchen smelled like a bar in a Summer resort just lacking the odor of tanning oil--(and I was getting loopy just from the aromatics. I turned on the exhaust fan).

I then bottled the results in sanitized glass containers (you can sanitize using detergent and the “hot wash” in your dishwasher.) The Limoncello needs to incubate another 2 weeks at room temperature. Then I will decorate and label the bottles—I plan to give away most to friends, but I'll reserve that ½ gallon one for the Summer Reunion dinner parties—remember it makes a nice cocktail diluted with seltzer water and over ice—kind of a sparkly vodka lemonade.




So, that's the rest of the story...

Posted by Karen at 08:18 CDT
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