LIMONCELLO

NZ Gardener - Gifts from the Gardens - - Preserves -

This tra­di­tional Ital­ian le­mon liqueur gets its flavour from le­mon zest. Use the best lemons with plump, moist skins. In­gre­di­ents • 15-20 lemons • 2 x 750ml bot­tles vodka • 4-6 cups wa­ter • 2-4 cups sugar

Wash and dry the lemons then re­move the peel with a sharp peeler or fine grater, avoid­ing the bit­ter white pith. Place peels in a 2-3 litre glass jar and add vodka to 5cm be­low the top. Seal tightly. Leave to steep in a cool, dark place un­til the peels lose their colour (at least 2 weeks, prefer­ably 2-3 months). Place the wa­ter and sugar in a pot, stir and slowly sim­mer un­til it turns clear. Cool then pour into the jar with the lemons (di­vide into two jars if nec­es­sary). Put the jars back in the cup­board for at least two weeks. Strain and pour the liq­uid into an­other con­tainer; dis­card peels. Stir with a wooden spoon then bot­tle, seal and leave for at least a week be­fore us­ing.

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