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Wednesday, July 7, 2010

Boot Legging

Well, now that prohibition is over and homebrewing and winemaking are so overrated (and, I'm sorry, a little snobby), I've decided to embark on a little experiment that will have little economical impact if it's a complete flop. And I probably can't poison anyone in the process.

I am making homemade Lemoncello. Or Limoncello. Whatever. In any case, for the unfamiliar, it is a lovely Italian "digestive" served after dinner. Like a port or brandy, it should be taken in small doses and savored. Not used like body shots or tequila shooters. The point here is enjoyment, not obliteration.

I got to experience Lemoncello at my boyfriends insistance at a local Italian restaraunt. I'm not much of a drinker and he told me it was very mild, like souped up lemonade. He's a big liar. The main ingredient in this drink is Everclear. Grain alcohol. It packs a kick, so be warned.

If anyone wants to try it with me, here's how it's done. If you live in a state where you can't get Everclear, you can use 100 proof Vodka.

15 Lemons (organic, if possible, without the wax)
1 Litre Everclear
1 Litre Water
2lb 3oz Sugar

1 litres = 4.22675284 cups. Call it 4 1/4 cup. (See, Dad, I DID learn something in math!)

Scrub lemons well, especially if you couldn't get organic. (I hear tell that Meyer Lemons are the best for this, but I got the lemons I could get.) Remove zest from lemons with vegetable peeler, avoiding the pith. Divide alcohol between 2 quart jars. Divide zest between the jars. Put lids on jars and store in cool dark place for 2 weeks. Now try to figure out what you're going to do with 15 peeled lemons.

Two weeks later, try to remember that you need to finish making your Lemoncello. Find the jars. Strain lemon zest from jars and reserve alcohol. Put zest in a pan with the water and sugar. Heat to boiling. Remove from heat, allow to cool. Remove zest and combine sugar syrup with alcohol in jars. Store in freezer.

I plan to package it up in mason jars like moonshine with some cute little tag for Christmas.

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