bottled limoncello

Italian Limoncello

READY in

4 Days

PreparaTion

3 Hours

CoOKING

15 min

PorTIONS

2 Liters

Cost

Medium

DifficUltY

Easy

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Homemade Limoncello

Digestive lemon infused a Italian liqueur from Cilento

“Italian Limoncello” is a Campanian liqueur with a straw-yellow color, simply made with water, sugar, and lemon peels macerated in ethyl alcohol, from which it derives its color and aroma. After a period of maturation, it becomes an excellent digestif to be enjoyed well chilled, following lunches, dinners, and classic summer feasts. Among the many liqueurs made in Cilento, limoncello ranks first in popularity, and in the month of May, during the pruning period but also the majority of the harvest, Nonna Claudia gets to work to ensure that the limoncello is ready for her guests in the summer period. Naturally, the peeled lemons are juiced, and to everyone’s delight, she prepares a lemon granita, which is a true delicacy.

Although the origins of limoncello are uncertain, as it is a recipe contested among Amalfi, Sorrento, and Capri, where there are various tales and assumptions that can even date back to Roman times. What is certain, in Capri, at the beginning of the 20th century, there was a local woman named Maria Antonia Farace, who besides running a small inn, also owned a lush garden of Sorrento lemons, a particular variety found planted along the entire Amalfi, Sorrento, and even Cilento coast, although the I.G.P. designation of limoncello recognizes only Amalfi and Sorrento. This lady, as was customary at that time to make homemade liqueurs and flavor them with whatever was available, used her lemons to make an ancient recipe from her grandmother. Therefore, this liqueur was not invented by her but handed down from previous generations.

After the World War, Farace’s son opened a restaurant, still in beautiful Capri, and adhering scrupulously to his mother’s recipe, he made a lot of limoncello at home, of which he offered a small glass to his customers. Everyone enjoyed it very much, especially foreigners, and this is how awareness of this liqueur began to spread throughout the region and abroad. In the 1980s, Farace’s grandson began bottling it and making his way into the Italian and foreign markets. Today, limoncello is a famous liqueur worldwide, especially in USA, where it has reached the peak of notoriety, thanks also to actors George Clooney and Danny De Vito, who, besides being passionate drinkers, have also become producers of it.

INGREDIENTS


Directions

Wash the lemons thoroughly with cold water to remove any dirt or pesticides.

Using a vegetable peeler or a sharp knife, peel the outside of the lemons, being careful to remove only the yellow part of the peel, avoiding the white part.

Place the lemon peels in a large, wide-mouthed glass jar with an airtight seal.

Pour the pure alcohol over the lemon peels, making sure they are completely immersed in the alcohol and close tightly.

Leave to macerate in a cool, dark place for three days in the dark, shaking the jar gently each day to mix the ingredients.

On the second day of maceration, make the syrup: Put the water on the stove, in a large pan that also contains the sugar, as much as it boils, add the sugar, mix with a spoon until it has dissolved, turn off the heat and let cool.

On the third day of maceration, pour the syrup into the jar with the peels and the alcohol, mix well two-three times, close with the lid and leave to infuse for a day, always in the dark.

On the fourth day, wash the bottles, put them upside down a little to let the water flow, then take the jar with the liquor, open it and mix well.

Place the funnel on another identical jar and line it with cotton cheesecloth for straining the liqueur.

At this point use a broth ladle that fits into the jar, otherwise pour the limoncello into a bowl and begin to strain the liqueur.

Remove the gauze from the funnel and with the same broth ladle or bowl, begin to bottle the limoncello.

When you have finished bottling, put the cap on the bottles and keep it in the pantry. It must mature at least 1 month before consumption.

Tips

  1. Any variety of lemons is fine, as long as they are strictly organic to avoid contamination.
  2. The peels must have only the yellow part, avoiding the white part which can give a bitter taste to the limoncello.
  3. To release all the aroma and color of the lemons, the peels must be very thin.
  4. To best filter the liqueur, use a cloth or tightly woven gauze.
  5. Limoncello should be drunk very cold, therefore, store it in bottles with freezer-resistant glass.
  6. Wait at least 1 month before consuming it, otherwise the taste of alcohol will be too strong.

Storage

  1. Limoncello, being a liqueur, can be stored for more than 1 year, although I doubt it will last but always in a dark place. Always keep a bottle in the freezer for daily consumption, because it should be enjoyed very cold.

Equipment

  1. Large 3 liter glass jar
  2. Vegetable peeler or sharp knife
  3. Funnel
  4. Soup ladle
  5. Cotton Cheesecloth for Straining
  6. 3 bottles of 700 ml
  7. 3 corks
  8. Cooker
  9. Casserole
  10. Spoon
  11. Bowl

Category

baked buffet cheese Cilento cream crust pastry dessert dough eggs homemade italian italian dish italian food Italy kitchen mediterranean diet recipe snack sweet traditional

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