When Life Gives you Lemons
RECIPE + PHOTOS BY VALERY RIZZO
On a hot Summer night, few things satisfy like a cool, refreshing cocktail. This homemade Limoncello recipe is the perfect addition to any light meal, or just to enjoy with a group of close friends. Tart & delicious, we think that this cocktail will become a Summer staple to be enjoyed for years to come. See below for recipe & instructions, and don’t forget to reward yourself with a glass afterwards!
- 11 organic lemons (thicker skinned, oval shaped lemons work best)
- 2 lemon leaves (optional)
- 1 liter bottle of 80 proof vodka
- 3½ cups of filtered water
- 2½ cups of granulated sugar
- Wash lemons and using a vegetable peeler remove the peel from the lemons into long strips vertically from top to bottom. (Reserve lemons for another use). You want just the lemon peel and not the pith which is the white part of the lemon.
- Place the lemon peels and optional 2 lemon leaves in a 2 quart air-tight jar. Pour the vodka over the peels and cover the jar and let steep or infuse for 15 days at room temperature. (some recipes steep anywhere from 4 days to 40 days or more)
- After 15 days, in a large saucepan, stir the water and sugar together over medium heat until the sugar dissolves, about 5 min. Cool completely. Pour the cooled sugar syrup into the jar over the vodka and peel mixture and stir together. Cover and let stand at room temperature overnight.
- The next day strain the Limoncello through a mesh strainer into another 2 quart jar and discard the peels. Using a funnel transfer the Limoncello to bottles. Seal the bottles and refrigerate until cold, at least 4 hours and up to one month. Makes 2 bottles.
- Before serving chill in the freezer and serve in liqueur glasses.