Sunday, July 24, 2011

Limoncello, the final result

So, remember how I told you all a month ago that I was making limoncello? Well, it is finally finished. You see, the Everclear had to soak up all of the lemony goodness of the lemon peel from 15 lemons for 3 weeks before I could add the sugar water and eventually transfer the mixture to bottles for serving and sharing. The end result is very lemony and rather potent. It is best served chilled and sipped slowly...

I have already told you my limoncello story (in the link above), so here I am going to take the time to talk about a favorite person of mine. A person who happens to love lemons. In fact, on the 4th of July, I asked this person what his favorite fruit was and he listed the following: blueberries, strawberries, raspberries, and lemons. This person is my three-year-old nephew.

Yes, aside from Positano, lemons also make me think of my nephew, and how when he was a baby he would suck on lemons as though they were candy. Yes, he puckered his lips when eating a lemon, but he seemed to love the experience. This was back when he made Zoolander lips...

But now he is getting a little bit older and getting more of a personality. He's a little bit bossier, but he's also as sweet as can be. Just last night he was sitting next to me at a restaurant, telling me all of the things he wanted to do at my apartment, and then he suddenly stood up, turned around, threw his arms around me and told me, "I love you, Ray-Ray. I love Lucy and Enzo too." It's moments like these that I wish I could preserve in a bottle to enjoy later. But I will take them as they come.

This potent liqueur should be sipped.

1 750ml bottle Everclear
15 lemons (preferably organic)
3 cups sugar
2 1/2 cups water

Scrub the lemons and peel them, being sure not to get any of the white (which is bitter). Put the peels in a 2-quart mason jar, then cover with the Everclear. Let sit in a cool, dark place for 3 weeks, shaking the mixture daily.

Combine the sugar and water in a saucepan and bring to a boil. Boil until the liquid is clear and the sugar has dissolved. Allow to cool for 30 minutes. Strain the Everclear-lemon mixture and pour back into the mason jar.  Add the sugar water and allow to cool to room temperature, then chill in the fridge overnight. Transfer the limoncello to sterilized 8-oz bottles. Makes about 7 bottles.


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