Thursday, December 1, 2011

Limoncello Dreams (our favorite limoncello recipes)... Inspired by Limonoro in Sorrento

Sorrento, living a dream...
Nothing beats a frosty glass of homemade Limoncello.  Except... perhaps a glass of creamy Limoncello served by the maker in Sorrento.

Sorrento, October 2011
Sorrento, with its stunning vistas, bustling Piazzas, quintessential Italian window box lined streets, and lemons at every corner is a true Limoncello mecca.  Small bottles of the brilliant yellow liquid sold in adorable, must have little bottles line many of the tourist store fronts, but it was in the Limonoro shop located on Via San Cesareo, in Sorrento, where we thought we had died and gone to heaven.

With lemon aromas drifting through the front door one can not help but to step inside where one is greeted with an even headier aroma of lemon.  A smiling Italian man wanders over with a bottle of Lemon Cream (Limoncello with cream) and offers a sample.  Thinking, "Well... I don't really care for creamy drinks, but ok, I'll give it a shot", I accept the small sample and sniff before taking a sip.  While the nose was wonderful, the taste was out of this world!  Smooth and bright with lemon flavors, I was immediately sold as was my husband.

Limonoro Limoncello... how do you pick just one??
Luggage restrictions being a slight problem (I admit that it may have been me who had already done a bit too much shopping at this point in our Italian voyage...) we chose a few small bottles of the addictive Lemon Cream while picking up bars of Limoncello infused chocolates (why didn't I get more?), Lemon infused olive oil, frosted "Made in Sorrento" Limoncello glasses and other assorted souvenirs.

Though cracking the Lemon Cream bottle was sorely tempting as we returned to our ship, we thankfully resisted temptation and brought our precious bottle home.  Making a wonderful Thanksgiving treat, the chilled bottle was served at dessert for our holiday meal having everyone, including my "I don't like anything with alcohol" Mom asking for a smidge more and having all of us head to bed with dreams of Sorrento as visions of lemons swirled in our heads. 

Sufficiently inspired and sufficiently supplied with a grocery bag filled with lemons from my dad's tree, my husband was up early two days ago with peeler in hand.  Some 25 lemons peeled and placed in our Limoncello jar, he had vodka pour over the peels in no time and our own version of Limoncello is currently steeping in the pantry and will be ready for holiday gift giving and baking.

Lemon Peels steeping in Vodka
Within less than 24 hours the vodka already had a brilliant yellow hue and the wonderful bright aroma of lemon.  While my husband's recipe stays fairly constant, the steeping time is open for discussion.  Our original Limoncello post from March of this year has his directions somewhat vague to "allow the mixture to rest for several weeks".

Here is where you can easily adjust the recipe time to suit yourself and your time constraints, we have seen recipes with "resting" times from as short as 5 days stretching to the "several weeks" that my husband uses.  I believe that most of the flavor and oils will be released from the lemon peels within the first 8 - 10 days and the lemon infused vodka will ready to be turned into the tempting Limoncello we love.

Limoncello is a wonderful homemade holiday gift and can be packaged in cute little Limoncello Bottles which can be found at World Market and Crate and Barrel.  Package a small bottle with a bag of homemade Limoncello Biscotti or a tasty, bursting with flavor Limoncello Lemon Cake and you are assured gushed over gift giving status.

And while we didn't use Limoncello in the following recipes, Lemons are indeed the star and I'm thinking a dash of Limoncello wouldn't hurt a bit:


  1. The way you describe the lemon cream has me salivating! Sounds like some awesome stuff. All your treats look scrumptious! And making limoncello so easy. We should all be doing it!

  2. I love Italy so much! I had never had limoncello until I went there and we were totally hooked too. I had no idea it was just lemon peels soaked in vodka. I can't wait to try this! Thank you for sharing and for all those delicious recipes. Those jello shots are beautiful!

  3. couldn't have made better choices. YUM!

  4. I think I'm drooling, lol! I just started my first ever batch of Limoncello last week. BUT, I zested the lemons instead of peeling them. My hands are still aching. I need to make more and use a peeler. I will be doing that tomorrow for sure. I have never heard of lemon cream but omg I need to have some. Great post, thank you. I love everything lemon!!!!!

  5. That first picture is divine. I am ready to book my trip. Thanks for this great limoncello round-up.

  6. I'm sooo jealous!! Wow. Wow!! And all of your recipes have me wanting more!

  7. Love anything lemony and all this is making me drooool!! Thanks for sharing.

  8. Mmm, great collection of dishes! My wife is in love with citrus fruit, she;s adore all of these :)

  9. Oh yum...I love anything lemony. I am definitely making a batch of this - but I'll probably keep it for myself :)

  10. Oh this is a fantastic post. Limoncello always sounds so wonderful (I've never had it) and it goes so well in the numerous recipes you've provided.

  11. As always, your photos are gorgeous. I've always thought about making a lemon-infused liquer, but haven't tried it. Your recipes are an incentive!

  12. I remember that amazing homemade limoncello that you gave us for the wedding. So yummy!!

  13. I've been rationing my bottle from you, but I might have to splurge on those cheesecake lemon bars. I like the cream version, just don't see it that often here.

  14. Mmm those biscotti, cake, and limoncello recipes sound divine!


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