Travel to Southern Italy with Homemade Limoncello


Making Limoncello at home is an old tradition in Southern Italy. Many homes carry this homemade after-dinner aperitif in the freezer. Yes, the bottle is best kept in the freezer, and the aperitif is served chilled. 🙂 Absolutely irresistible!

Our good friend Emilio is from Southern Italy, and has lived in the United States for many years. He finds time in his busy schedule to make limoncello. It is his unique way to travel back home, one sip at a time.

We had been to dinner at Emilio’s home and he offered us limoncello. Following traditional customs, some serve it on small ceramic glasses, also chilled. Emilio used beautiful, small, delicate glasses. I had to ask him for the recipe. Emilio was very generous. He gave me the recipe, and reached into his freezer for a bottle (from a batch he had previously made.) Needless to say, my husband was extremely happy! I was also extremely happy with the experience! I went a bit further and got myself the beautiful set of limoncello glasses you see in this post. Somehow an extra set of 4 glasses got purchased and made it out of the store with me. They were for Emilio, of course! I couldn’t think of a better way to show my gratitude.

Thinking about all that great Limoncello taste, I went ahead and researched other recipes calling for limoncello, and here are my favorite ones: Limoncello chicken and limoncello cake. I will try them and share them with you in future posts. For now, here is Emilio’s recipe.

  • Limoncello 


10 lemons (as fresh and large as possible)

1 qt Everclear alcohol

1 1/4 qt. water

2 lbs sugar

Peel the lemons very thin. Prepare an infusion with the lemon peels and the Everclear. The infusion needs to sit for about 10 days. After 10 days, boil the water and add sugar for a few minutes to make a simple syrup (sugar will be completely dissolved and mixture should be clear.) Let the water and sugar cool completely. Strain the Everclear infusion, remove the lemon peels. Combine the simple syrup mixture with the Everclear and pour into bottles. Store in a cool, dark place. Be sure to put the limoncello in the freezer before serving as it is best served very cold.


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