Make Limoncello from Meyer Lemons
Limoncello is a slightly bitter, refreshing aperitif. Traditionally served icy cold, before meals to stimulate digestive juices, the bitter principle in limoncello is stimulating and carminative. Have a glass before a heavy meal, or serve it up with dessert. Your liver will thank you.
You can make limoncello at home with any organic lemons, but when made with organic Meyer lemons it is especially delicious, with a light lemon flavour. Please use organic lemons in this limoncello recipe. Conventionally grown lemons will have fungicides on their peels to prevent mold in storage, and may have toxic pesticides in the peel as well. The best lemons will be the ones you pick yourself from your backyard lemon tree.
There are many methods for making limoncello at home. This method is much like making lemon extract, or a lemon peel tincture. What makes it a liqueur instead of an extract or tincture is the addition of syrup at the end of the process. It will have a sweet-tart taste with obvious lemon taste.
To make this Limoncello recipe you’ll need 4 lbs. of Meyer lemons for this, about 9 large Meyer lemons.
2 whole large Meyer lemons or 3 small lemons, washed
Lemon zest from 5 large Meyer lemons
Additional zest from 2 fresh Meyer lemons
750ml vodka (1 bottle)
½ cup of water
½ cup of organic sugar
Wash and zest 5 Meyer lemons, avoiding the bitter white pith in the peel, as much as possible. Place the zest in a wide-mouth jar. Add 2 or 3 whole Meyer lemons. Pour vodka over the lemons and zest in the jar. Cap tightly.
Place the jar in a dark cupboard away from heat. Shake the jar daily for 1 month, or as often as you think of it.
After a month:
Strain the contents of the jar, and place the liquid into a new jar. Mix the water and sugar to make simple syrup. Don’t heat it. Just keep stirring until the sugar is dissolved. Add it to the liquid in the jar. Add the zest of two Meyer lemons. Cap tightly.
Allow the jar to sit in a dark cupboard for 24 hours, to intensify the lemon scent and taste.
Strain and bottle. Label.
When researching how much sugar to add to my limoncello recipe I came across another method for making Limoncello using regular organic lemons from Gizmodo, “How to Make the Best Limoncello”. They use more sugar and whole lemons. Try their method, too, and see which you like better. Let me know if you do try it. I may try that one next time.
Katie at Livin’ Lovin’ Farmin’ has a different Limoncello Recipe for you to try.
Limoncello is traditionally served icy cold, in small amounts, as a before or after dinner cocktail, to aid digestion. It makes a nice mixer to add to other drinks as well.