That time again…

Here in ye olde south it’s getting hot fast.  We’re in the March temperature swings, where it gets all whackadoodle going from 80 to 30 and back. But it’s clear that before too terribly long I’m going to be bitching a blue streak about how hot it is.

What I’m going to need is something ice cold, sweet, and lemony to take the edge off.

It’s time to start making the limoncello.

So yesterday I bought 3 bottles of grain alcohol, 3 dozen lemons, and a microplaner.

For limoncello you really only want the zest of the lemons, at a proportion of about 14 lemons per (750ml) bottle of alcohol.  The lemons I got at Publix were a bit small, so I edged up to 36 for two bottles.

There’s not REALLY much to say about the process. It’s awful and time consuming.  Fortunately I didn’t scrape a big chunk of skin off my fingers this time.  Getting the zest into bottles is a bit of a headache as it clumps up bad.

If you’re going to do this, know that you won’t be able to use the bottles the grain alcohol came in.  There’s just not enough room. You’ll need to find something a bit bigger.  I generally keep a few larger bottles around, either from brewing experiments or just because I like those Martinelli apple juice bottles, which is what I ended up using.

So I did that twice, 18 lemons zested into each bottle, poured the full contents of the grain alcohol in, sealed the bottles and stuck them under the sink, with the rest of my home made alcohol stuff.

There it will need to sit for 7-8 weeks or so.

The third bottle of grain is going to be an experiment.    More on that when I get the rest of the stuff I need for it. 🙂