Six weeks ago I began the process of attempting to make my own limoncello. The lemon peels have been stewing in a noxious mixture of Everclear and vodka this entire time, waiting to be turned into something delectable.

Still referring to this recipe, today I came much closer to having my very own bottled limoncello. First, I removed as many lemon peels as I could from the lemon/alcohol mixture with a slotted spoon.

I noticed the peels were quite pale and had lost a lot of their yellow color. Apparently this is both normal and good — the lemony color and essence had successfully transferred into the alcohol.
Then I poured the rest of the alcohol mixture through a wet coffee filter, to strain out the other particles and impurities. I had to attach the filter to the funnel with paper clamps, to keep the coffee filter from sliding down. (Later I realized I probably could have strained it through a french press coffee maker, making sure the french press was super clean so my limoncello wouldn’t tase like coffee.)

Then I poured each cup of filtered lemon alcohol into a bowl, on deck until I completed a simple syrup. (I used 4 cups of water, 4 cups of sugar, dissolved the sugar then brought to a boil, boiled for 7 minutes, removed it from heat and let it reach room temperature).
After mixing the simple syrup with the lemon alcohol, it was time to bottle. This recipe made way more than I’d expected so I had to scrounge for bottles and put some of it in a mason jar.

So… how did it taste? Well, according to the recipe I followed I still need to wait another week to let the sugar and lemons and alcohol work their magic, and in the meantime keep the bottles in the freezer. I did have a little taste on ice, and it was pretty good. And strong — I had less than a shot’s worth and determined that this stuff is definitely not just for the ladies. I’m hoping that in a week I’ll have something even more tasty. And maybe I can mix it with a little club soda, fresh lemon juice and fresh mint leaves? Mmmmm…

PS – I’ve been kind of overwhelmed that my bagel post has been on the WordPress Freshly Pressed front page for the last three days. Before this happened, I’d honestly never really even looked at that page and had never considered that a bunch of random people would read any of this. (Otherwise I would’ve written clearer instructions on how to make the bagels!) I started this blog mainly for myself, so I can look back and remember that I actually am accomplishing things in my new city, and to keep friends and family updated on what I’m doing. I’ve had almost 5,000 hits, 80 comments and over 100 likes on that post. Guess people really like bagels. (Well, yeah. That makes sense.) I’m sure most people who checked this blog out probably won’t keep reading, but for those that do, thanks!