Limoncello, the signature refreshment in south Italy, keeps giving talk at italian tables while claiming paternity of this jewel. People from Amalfi, Capri, Salerno and Sicily (amongst others) strongly believe they were the ones to come up with the idea.
Limoncello is a yellow lemon liquor can be easily made at home and may vary in sweetness whether it is thought to be offered as an aperitif or as a digestive.
The original limoncello is made with pure alcohol, but since it may be hard to get or dangerous to ingest if not handled properly, for this home made recipe we will use vodka. In Dominican Republic they limoncello with white rum too so if you’re not really a vodka drinker this is your alternative.
This technique is called “infusion” and you can play around by using some other ingredients such as cinnamon, orange, cloves and so on.
Don’t be afraid and give it a try!
Home made Limoncello:
First we will need one kilogram of yellow lemon for one bottle of vodka (750ml)…
The zest of the lemon must be taken off using the peeler
It is very important not to have any of the white skin on, since it will bitter the product
If the peel comes off with white skin, it must be carefully removed
The lemon zest must be introduced into the vodka bottle of choice. In this photo I used Absolut but later on I decided I much rather use Kettle One.
The bottle must rest in a dark place laying down for 10 days, and must me turned daily for the zest to infuse the vodka
After 10 days, the vodka will appear yellow in color and the zest must be removed. If zest remains longer the product will have a bitter aftertaste.
The infused vodka must then be introduced into the bottle chosen for final product and 250ml of simple syrup must be added (you can either buy the syrup ready or make it your own by mixing half and half of water and sugar and bringing it to a boil), together with 250ml of water. Here is where you will determine if the liquor will need more or less sugar (if wanted for aperitif or digestive) and more or less water (add water to lower the alcoholic degree). Once sweetened, the liquor must rest for another 8 days being mixed daily.
Create a label and your delicious, amazing limoncello will be ready!
I always say it is vital to drink it very very cold.. Of course thinking of the Amalfitan coast in one of those beautiful days with the sun in your face while smelling the lemon trees.. only in South Italy..
I hope you enjoy and have fun in this adventure!
Home made Limoncello
For this recipe you will need:
- Vegetable peeler
- Cutting board
- Bottle with 1.5L capacity for final product
- Bottle of 750ml of Vodka without dispenser
- 1kg of organic aromatic yellow lemon
- 250-300ml of simple syrup
- 250ml water
1.- Take off zest of lemon without white skin and if necessary remove it
2.- Insert zest into bottle of Vodka twisting each piece to release oil and store in a dark place
4.- Turn bottle daily to mix and infuse for 10 days
5.- Strain infused vodka and transfer into new bottle
6.- Add 250ml of simple syrup (or as desired according to sweetness the more the sweeter)
7.- Add 250ml of water (or as desired according to degrees of alcohol the less the stronger)
8.- Let product rest for 8 days (remember, in a dark place), mixing daily
9.- Create a label and enjoy cold!!