Limoncello is the generic name for an Italian citrus-based liquer. Limone is the Italian word for LEMON. We often make Limonettacella because our backyard limes are abundant. Another option is Arancella, made with oranges. Meyer lemons make especially tasty limoncello.
Whatever you concoct, choose good-quality fruit, use the zest only, and allow the full 80 days maturation for peak flavor. Keep it ready in the freezer.
It is typically served well-chilled in the summer months. Cin cin!
Step One: Wash lemons & pat dry. Carefully zest lemons so there is no pith with peel.
In a large glass jar (1 gallon), add one bottle vodka. Add lemon zest as it is zested. Cover the jar and let sit at room temperature for 10-40 days.
The longer it rests, the better the taste will be. There is no need to stir. As the limoncello sits, the vodka slowly takes on the flavor and rich yellow (or orange, or green) color of the citrus zest.
Step Two: In a large saucepan, combine the sugar and water; cook until thickened, approximately 5-7 minutes.
Cool the syrup before adding it to the limoncello mixture.
Add to the glass jar from Step One. Add the additional bottle of vodka. Allow to rest for another 10-40 days.
Step Three: After the rest period, strain and bottle, discarding the lemon zest. Keep in the freezer until ready to serve.
Limoncello is for sipping. It's quite sweet.
Some of us enjoy our cello in a tini, with (yet more) vodka and citrus juice mixed in a cocktail shaker. Add ice, shake vigorously for 15 seconds, and strain into a martini glass.