Saturday, March 21, 2009

limoncello, part 2

buon giorno! i am feeling very italian today as i post the second set of steps for making limoncello. i first wrote about limoncello forty days ago in my post want some ice cold limoncello this summer? i told you the story of the first time i visited italy with my husband...and our discovery of the magic of ice cold limoncello on a very hot italian summer day. we loved this liqueur so much that i decided to make it myself...we get tons of meyer lemons every year from our tree, we grow rosemary year round...and our summers here in napa are very similar to italian weather. i experimented with many recipes, but landed on this one...originally from sunset magazine...a few years ago as our favorite. it is easy and delicious...the only glitch...it takes 80 days!!!

(this is what the limoncello looks like after infusing for the first 40 days)
i invited readers to make this year's batch with me....kind of an interactive approach by only posting the steps as i go...and have received a lot of emails/comments from people letting me know they are following along and have limoncello infusing in their own homes...how cool is that? i have this image of people all over the world sipping this lovely drink at the same time one day in may with a virtual toast to summer, italy...and limoncello...
so, for all of you ready for step two...here you go...don't be afraid of the large quantity of sugar required (9 cups!!)...remember, if you are making the full recipe you will get 20 8.5 oz bottles. again, this recipe is easily reduced by half....but i wouldn't...it goes really fast once friends and family get their first sip...
and, if you have not started yet...it is never too late...just go to the first post for the directions to get started...you are always only 80 days away...good news for us...the meyer lemon tree we planted 4 years ago appears to be fruiting year round...it is march and the tree is still full of fruit, with lots of blossoms...so i will be making limoncello all year....it really, really goes fast in my home...
(a jar after second step and a jar before second step)

limoncello, part 2
10 cups water
9 cups sugar
2 bottles (750 ml. each) 100 proof vodka, such as stolichnaya or smirnoff

bring the water to a boil in a large pot. add the sugar and stir until completely dissolved. let the sugar syrup cool to room temperature.

divide the syrup in half and pour first half into one of your lemon-vodka mixture 1 gallon glass jars and the second half into the other gallon jar. pour 1 full bottle vodka into each jar. stir well. seal container and let sit undisturbed in a cool, dark place for another 40 days...
(note, i zest half my lemons with a sharp knife and half with a microplane zester...so combination of large peel and finely shredded peel... the peel will separate as the limoncello sits...no worries, the entire batch will be beautifully infused)
see you in 40 days for the third...and final!...step....

happy spring everyone...

ciao!
diane


diane padoven
founder/president
napa farmhouse 1885™
"live a green life of style"™

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8 comments:

Shawn said...

OK Diane, Thank you for step 2. I am making the limoncello also, but only half the recipe for my first try. Thank you for the photos. It helps a beginner to know what it should look like. And it looks delicious!

Donna said...

Good Morning, Diane. I stirred and checked my batch yesterday. It is indeed yellow! I read from my recipe that I got in Italy a couple of years ago that as long as the peels are still bendable, there is more goodness that they have to impart. So, I am going to wait a couple more weeks for the sugar step, if you don't mind. But I have the organic sugar on the shelf just dying to get into that jar and make everything yummy! Happy Spring to you all. (I say this as we are expecting around 10 inches of snow today!) In this very dry year, we will take what we can get!

napa farmhouse 1885 said...

hi shawn..welcome back. trust me, the limoncello is delicious...cannot wait for our virtual toast..

diane

napa farmhouse 1885 said...

hi donna...how are you? i do not mind at all that you are giving your batch a couple more weeks...love the experimenting...my batch will continue to infuse during this next 40 days...and then maybe we can compare the color of both of our batches? will be good to know for my next batch.

please keep in touch.. enjoy the snow :)

diane

brooke said...

sigh, sigh sigh. I'm not making limoncello and now I'm longing for Positano and the little 70's style red and white striped bikini I wore on the tiniest black gravel beach...I can't believe they call them beaches. It was a wonderful time, and now I'm so, so thirsty!

Linda Lou said...

Diane, check out my limoncello cheesecake recipe....I think I need to start some batches myself so we can enjoy Limoncello all summer long!!

napa farmhouse 1885 said...

hi brooke...i can relate..it is torture watching the jars..waiting and waiting for the next 40 days...limoncello will not be ready for the salt fest...but the may meeting for sure!!

napa farmhouse 1885 said...

hi linda...thanks for sharing your limoncello cheesecake recipe..it looks delicious...will have to add it to my collection..with the homemade version of limoncello of course!

diane