Limoncello…the perfect Housewarming or Hostess Gift

Thrifty Thursday

Happy Thursday you guys!  We are over the hump, and headed to the weekend…and it feels great!  Today, Sam and I wanted to share with you a little project that may be slow going (aka you can’t be spontaneous with it), but it is super thrifty and very sophisticated.  Introducing Limoncello (Italian pronunciation: [limonˈtʃɛllo]) photoGorgeous, right??  I feel luxuriously sophisticated just saying it….Lee-mone-chello!  So sexy!  This fabulous Italian liquor is so easy to make and so beautiful to look at, that it makes for the perfect thrifty hostess gift.  It takes very little effort…but, it takes time.  So, right from the start, let me encourage you to try this recipe out…and then stash some beautiful bottles of it in the freezer for those spontaneous weekend plans in the future.  You will be very happy when you can make a quick dash to the freezer and pull out a gift that is a tad more special than the usual.  If you include a cute label and some drink and/or dessert recipes, you will look like a total rock star! So, here is the gist: OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAGrab 10 lemons at the store and shave off the zest (keep it thrifty by shopping at Costco, the 99c Store, the Grocery Outlet, or such).  Watch out for the pith….that white part of the skin is nasty bitter! OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERANext step is to grab a bottle of vodka.  The beauty of this recipe is that you can literally not worry about buying a cheap variety.  I hope you wouldn’t dare think about wasting a bottle of Grey Goose on this one….the flavor is going to be so altered that it would be a total waste.  Do yourself a favor and buy a bottle from the bottom shelf.  Remember to be thrifty 🙂 Now, pour your vodka selection over the zest. OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAHere comes the non-spontaneous aspect of this project.  Cover your container with plastic wrap and let it sit for 4 days at room temperature.  Yup….this ain’t a quickie 🙂


Image link

Ok, 4 days accomplished, it’s time to move on!  Stir together 3 1/2 cups of water and 2 1/2 cups sugar in a pot over medium heat, stir til it dissolves (just a few minutes).

Cool completely and then pour the sugar syrup over the vodka mixture.
OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA Cover and let stand at room temperature overnight. Strain the limoncello through a mesh strainer and discard all those peels.
photo copy 2
Transfer your limoncello to some fancy bottles (Sam and I are really good about collecting interesting bottles at thrift stores, but if that’s not your thing, Cost Plus World Market is a great source for beautiful clear bottles…..remember that you want clear, so that the gorgeous color of the limoncello shines through).
photo copy Seal the bottles and refrigerate until cold, at least 4 hours and up to 1 month….or stash them in the freezer!
photoOh my, this is so delicious!  And for more fabulous recipes using limoncello (other than just sipping an ice cold glass of it), check out these links:
Or heck, just drizzle it over some gelato!
Bon apetit peeps!