26 September, 2018
Limoncello is an Italian liqueur made with lemon peels, alcohol, sugar, and patience. If you want to put your leftover naked lemons to use, make a double batch of this recipe and then use the fruit and any leftover alcohol to make hard lemonade (or regular lemonade)! This is a set-it-and-forget-it recipe with a quick prep time and a long and leisurely wait time.
If you’ve never had it before, limoncello is a sweet, lemony liqueur served cold. It’s best enjoyed as a slow sipper, mixed in prosecco, or as part of many delicious mixed drinks (here are a few to try). Buying it at the store is often quite expensive, but making it yourself is unbelievably easy! If you start a batch now, you can have it ready in time to bottle for the holidays. Give your friends and family a delicious homemade treat that’s sure to get them talking (and make things merry).
3 1/4 cups High-proof vodka
2 1/3 cups Sugar
3 1/4 cups Water
Wash and dry the lemons and get out a container that can comfortably hold about 8 cups of liquid. Using a potato peeler, skin the lemons and put the peels in the container, followed by the vodka. Mash the peels with a spoon or a metal ladle, and cover the jar. Swirl the liquid and store the jar in a cool, dark place for 2-3 weeks.
After the peels and vodka have rested, strain out the peels and return the liquid to the jar. In a saucepan, heat up the water and add in the sugar, stirring to make sure all of the sugar is dissolved into the water. Let the syrup cool before pouring it into the jar. Swirl to make sure no sugar is left undissolved. Close the jar again and return it to its dark corner for another month. You can skip the latter setting time, though it lets the flavors mingle more, creating a more full-bodied beverage in the end. Bottle and seal your finished limoncello in a cool, dark place until you’re ready to bottle and store it or gift it to a friend! Keep it refrigerated so it’s always chilled and ready to go when you are.