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Thread: Limoncello (Lemoncello) the Italian way

  1. #311
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    Just a simple update. I've presently gone back to the exact original post/recipe. I use plain old Domino sugar, distilled water. 35-40 grams of lemon rind per recipe.

    The cloudiness that you get at the end of it all is due to the water and alcohol ratio.

    Once you get past a certain percentage of water to alcholol it's going to cloud up using whatever spirit you are using.

    You can avoid it and stay totally clear - but you'll probably have a stronger alcohol/proof that you would temper out as you use the cello anyway.

    I still play with adding lemon juice but only while serving - not in the recipe itself.

    If I want it more sweet I adjust it later per drink/bottle with a squirt or so of liquid sweetener of choice.

    Stick with Kevin's suggestions in terms of maceration time. Month's of maceration is simply not required.

    It won't hurt but not necessary. Once the zest turns white - it's done.

    Technical Reserve is spendy and I'm going to play with it but not for big batches.

    I plan to mess with TR for quick experiments with other types of zest - and other general maceration experiments. It has a very
    short maceration time that I like in that regard.
    Last edited by r benash; 03-25-2018 at 08:08 AM.
    Ray
    WSMPerformerGenesis 1000

  2. #312
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    Using standard/basic recipe from first post. I did a triple blind test with 4 different subjects.

    I used Villa Massa brand Limoncello as the benchmark as that seems to be the typical favorite over
    time with the folks I know who cook with, drink, or make their own Limonchello. It's also the one I
    go to if my pantry is out. Several of them have also had limoncello while visiting Italy. The house made
    in the restaurants I visited there are still the best IMHO. I think that's due to the type of lemons/rind native
    to Italy.

    I'm using the standard type of lemons found in the supermarkets, organic or non organic. I always clean the
    lemons before zesting.

    In all of them they chose this standard recipe. They found the Massa a little to sharp, lemon oil centered, and less smooth.
    I felt the same and I really like Massa, so it's a subtle difference.

    Only clarification is that I standardized at 50 grams of zest per liter of 95% grain (corn) alcohol for making the
    base. One week is typically enough for maceration. But I will leave it in the grain for longer periods until I'm ready to
    mix a final batch. I typically make 2-3 liters of of base at a time.

    I save my lemon zest in the freezer as I use lemon juice etc through out a given period
    until I decide I have enough to or want to make a batch of base. I always use a microplane
    for zesting. It's very consistent and doesn't require any skill to avoid cutting into the pith.

    I freeze the zest and store in zip lock typically so I can have access easily for other recipes and build up a standard amount,
    say 50 gram or more.

    I have vac sealed zest as well but frankly doesn't make much difference IMHO in this case. I.E. - just wanting the
    essential oils which don't seem to deteriorate that fast to absolutely require VAC Seal for storage.

    I get a nice opaque yellow color as well as using 95% grain and the original amount of water prevent's the blend from
    getting too cloudy. The cloudiness comes from percentage of alcohol to water. Buy staying with 95% grain in the base
    you have more control over water to alcohol ratio.
    Last edited by r benash; 11-04-2018 at 06:10 AM.
    Ray
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  3. #313
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    Hi, RAY.....long time....I see above you have increased zest to 50 from 40 or so. Correct ? I went to 12 lemons from 10....... but I am going to my new gram scale to be consistent. Good to hear you about. Remember my trying Rhubarbacello....Everyone loved it and it does improve with age. It is too much work though as when I pressed the pulp to get all the liquid, there was so much particulate I had a devil of a time getting it filtered enough for me. If I could improve here I probably would continue, as it is a nice change, indeed and the women loved the blush ( I mean the color of the drink ).Dave

  4. #314
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    Quote Originally Posted by David DeVivo View Post
    Hi, RAY.....long time....I see above you have increased zest to 50 from 40 or so. Correct ? I went to 12 lemons from 10....... but I am going to my new gram scale to be consistent. Good to hear you about. Remember my trying Rhubarbacello....Everyone loved it and it does improve with age. It is too much work though as when I pressed the pulp to get all the liquid, there was so much particulate I had a devil of a time getting it filtered enough for me. If I could improve here I probably would continue, as it is a nice change, indeed and the women loved the blush ( I mean the color of the drink ).Dave
    Hi David! Yes I tried the Rhubarb and definitely a fan. But as you said a bit of work. I made it a couple times and liked it.

    Yes I did move to 50 grams last run. But I would say 40-50 grams now is my choice. It's just a little deeper and a bit more mellow and closer to the benchmark I use. Again we are talking grams, so really not that critical. The amount of zest from a given lemon will vary - typically for me it's 3.5 to 5 grams each. So I would say moving to 12 lemons worth is safe enough as a start. I actually use zest that I keep in the freezer over time as I am using lemons. Once I have 40-50 grams of zest saved now, I just make the base and keep that stored. Then once I need to bottle a batch I grab the bottle of base and finish to the final stage. Good luck!

    The original recipe though remains fine as it is.
    Ray
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  5. #315
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    Just as an example for those looking to measure lemon rind by weight. I use an average, but I use weight in grams. There's no way that one can hit any accuracy (assuming one wants to) by using a count of pieces of fruit.

    For example I have one bag of rind from 3 lemons at 24G and another of 7 lemons at 36 grams. :-)

    This is why I have gone to weight measurement for lemon rind in my Limoncello.

    I just started by marking given bags of fruit count/rind weight in grams and reached an average.

    So in this case I have "10 lemons of rind" weighing 60 grams, an average of 10 grams per lemon in this case. I've found over time that if I keep the total of rind for the recipe
    in the range of 40-50 grams I hit my mark against my benchmark.

    Your performance may vary.

    IMHO I recipe that is just saying "rind from 10 lemons" doesn't really cut it, if you are trying to hit consistency. But a variance of up to 10 grams total weight won't make a difference.
    Last edited by r benash; 04-16-2019 at 08:16 AM.
    Ray
    WSMPerformerGenesis 1000

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