Each year I make small, homemade gifts for Anthony's and my colleagues. One favourite is homemade limoncello, a simple lemon liquor. It was extremely easy to make, though it has to rest for a week, so if you want to make it, get started soon! All you need is lemons (organic, preferably), vodka, and sugar.
Limoncello is a really versatile liquor to drink. It can be enjoyed neat, especially when very cold. In an undiluted state it is thick and syrupy. It would make a really great dessert drink, sipped genteely from a tiny cup.
Limoncello makes wonderful cocktails as well. It should be mixed with soda water, tonic, ginger ale, Sprite/7Up, or sparkling lemonade, then served with a twist or wedge of lemon.
Although there is a one week waiting period, making limoncello is really very simple. I used this Alton Brown recipe. It starts by zesting organic lemons; please don't use waxed, conventional lemons. You don't want wax or pesticides in your limoncello. I was amazed by how much zest can be generated by fifteen lemons!
The zest and vodka are mixed and then left for a week. The next step is to make a simple sugar syrup and add it to the mixture. Then mix it with the flavoured vodka and there you have it; limoncello!
Anthony and I decanted the limoncello into these little glass jars. Each one held 50 ml, enough for two mixed drinks. I photocopied some handwritten tags and we tied them on with ribbons.
Here are some other delicious make-it-yourself gift ideas:
- Irish Cream and Pistachio Fudge & Dark Chocolate and Kahlua Fudge
- Hermit Bars
- Hot Chocolate on a Stick
- Chocolate Peppermint Bark
What's your favourite edible gift to give? To receive??
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