Yardboy, since we had a request for Limoncello on your radio show, I thought I’d share my recipe. It’s timely, since it will make a great holiday gift or addition to autumn cocktails.
LIMONCELLO This Italian lemon liqueur is all the rage now. The great thing about this is it keeps just about forever in the freezer.
2 generous pounds lemons, thick skinned
4 cups 100 proof vodka
3 cups sugar
3 cups water
Pour vodka in large gallon glass jar.
Wash lemons and brush to remove wax coating. Use hot water. Pat dry. Remove zest with a vegetable peeler. Take off all of the pith – that’s the white part – from the zest as it is really bitter. If you can’t get it all off, do the best you can. Place zest in jar with vodka and cover. Let sit at room temperature for at least one week though I usually let it infuse for 2-3 weeks. You can place it in a cool, dark place but I sometimes like to leave it out on my counter, though, just to see the color change and smell the lemon aroma when I open the jar. The vodka will take on the color and flavor of the lemon as it steeps. You can leave the lemon peels in the vodka for up to a month. It just gets better & better.
Now bring the sugar and water to a simmer and stir until sugar dissolves and thickens a bit. Let cool and then add that to vodka mixture and stir. Strain and put in pretty bottles. Seal and chill a month in frig (or freezer) before using.
To use, serve straight over ice chips, mix with sparkling wine or mineral water and a lemon curl, toss with fresh fruit, serve over ice cream, frozen yogurt or simple cake. Lavender Limoncello: When infusing the limoncello, add a handful or so of lavender sprigs. Proceed with recipe.