Saturday, November 8, 2014

Limoncello- A little extra tangy

(I've got to get a better picture than this one... maybe I will update it after tonight's celebration)

A big Italian feast for a friend's 50th tonight, and what else to top off an Italian dinner, but a little limoncello?

I remember the first time I had limoncello, it was such a disappointment.
I was expecting a tangy blast of yumminess, but strangely it was just sweet with a lemon taste.
It was missing the lemony TANG.
I like the TANG. 

Every other time I have limoncello, even in Italy where I had it more than once (!) and even orangecello, I just felt it needed a bit more tang.

So, here it is.
MY version of limoncello, I know it's not traditional.
That was not my intent.  My intent is exactly what I made.

Salute, enjoy and celebrate life.  We'll be celebrating 50 years tonight.

For the record, I know those glasses in the picture above are a bit bigger than "small" however, it was what was leftover after I tried to pour the finished limoncello back into the bottle.  We were totally loving it!  Winner, I may have to make another bottle for "home use".  LOL.

Makes 1 large bottle
Serves a small group...

750 ml bottle of vodka
6-8 lemons

1 cup sugar
1 cup lemon juice

Using a vegetable peeler, remove strips of lemon peel from the lemons.  Try to avoid getting too much of the white pith.  In a large jar, or wide mouth bottle, add the vodka and all the lemon peels.  Cover and store.

In a another smaller jar, juice the lemons until you have 1 cup.  Add 1 cup of white sugar and shake together.  Store in the fridge, give it a shake every so often until the mixture is fully dissolved of the the sugar.  You could also make a simple syrup, but this jar method works fine as you have lots of time for the sugar to dissolve in the juice.  You will add this mixture to the lemon vodka mixture in a week or so.

Shake the jar of vodka/peels every day or so for 7-14 days.  I only stored mine for 7 days.  You will see your vodka take on a nice yellow color.  After 7-14 days, strain the vodka, removing the lemon peel.  Discard the lemon peels. Add the lemon juice/sugar mixture and stir or shake to mix.  Chill and serve in small glasses, or over ice.

NOTE:  Sometimes, limoncello is stored in the freezer in order to serve it extra cold, however, this limoncello recipe does NOT freeze well as the ratio of juice, sugar and lower proof vodka allow it to freeze pretty solid.
If you used a higher octane booze, like Ever Clear, it might not freeze and stay liquid and super cold in the freezer..

Update 2016,  need some ideas beyond just sipping your Limoncello?  What about a Limoncello martini, my recipe is here: Limoncello Martini 

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