It’s killing me that I can’t post this recipe right away! But I have to wait until after Christmas to do it as the limoncello bottles are gifts. I never really considered limoncello as something that I needed to have. But I was watching an episode of Valerie Bertinelli where the feature was everything lemon. Not only did the limoncello look ridiculously yummy and fresh, but easy to make. The only thing it takes is time.
Looking at the reviews on Valerie’s recipe, I decided to use a different simple syrup. This not only used up most of the lemon juice left over from the 26 zested lemons, but added colour and more lemon zing.
After two weeks of steeping and the addition of the lemon juice syrup, the liqueur that was the end result is devine. It smells like lemonade, goes down smoothly, and tastes as good as it smells.
Average price per bottle works out to be about $15/bottles (26 lemons, bottles, 2L vodka, labels) and bottles at the store run about $25 and up. The work versus reward is about even, so I think if you want to give something homemade, that this is a great item, but buying quality store-bought shouldn’t be dismissed.
I bought the labels from Zazzle and I have to admit I did give a bit of a “squeee!” when I saw them.
I think I may plan on making limoncello again, but maybe waiting until lemons are in season to buy so many.
- 26-28 lemons
- 2 L vodka
- 2 cups water
- 2 cups cane sugar
- 3 cups lemon juice
- Fine sieve
- Clean the lemons - start by running the lemons under hot water, then turning the temperature of the water to cool. Scrub the outside of the lemon with a vegetable brush under the cooler water.
- Pat dry and zest the lemons.
- Put the zest in an extra-large GLASS container.
- Add the 2L of vodka, cover the container tightly with saran wrap and set aside (room temperature) for a minimum of 1 week.
Once the vodka has steeped, make the simple syrup
- In a small sauce pot, combine the water and cane sugar, bring to a soft boil, stirring until the sugar dissolves. Set aside until cool.
- Once cool, add the lemon juice.
- Add the mix to the steeped vodka, recover with saran wrap, and set aside for 24 hours (again room temperature).
- Sanitize the bottles.
- Line the sieve with cheesecloth and pour the limoncello over (into another large container), squeezing out the zest to get every last drop!
- Pour into the bottles, seal, and store in the freezer for best flavor.*