Limoncello – The Great Experiment
Every recipe I've seen for Limoncello calls for vodka. So, since I was planning to make the stuff, I bought a 2 litre bottle of Vodka when I did my shopping. Then I got home and saw the two litre jug of Barcardi light rum sitting in the cupboard and had a minor epiphany. To wit...I don't like vodka. I think it stinks bigtime. There is little to no diff between Vodka and any of the other supposedly flavorless eaux de vie (I really have to go back to French class. I have no idea if that's correct.)
So, my first diversion from the path of righteous—, the recipe will be to try it with rum instead. In fact, maybe I'll do a small batch of each and compare them in a few weeks. Who knows, maybe all that lemon zest will even out the flavor differences. I'd really love to try it with Tequila, but that stuff turns my feet into pontoons. Seriously, I could probably walk on water with those things on the ends of my legs. Clearly, my kidneys do not approve of Tequila, although my tastebuds prefer it above all others.
A small digression - A couple of years ago, I took about a litre of rum, tucked maybe 8 of the red chilis (like you'd use for Kung Pao Chicken) into the bottle and let it rest until the chilis were getting a bit pale and wan. I think flames erupted from my mouth when I tasted it, but a little spritz of that in a Feelthy Martini (made with Bacardi, of course) – I love olives and their brine – and you have a thing of beauty and zing. Ah, poetry. And a dash in Gazpacho or Salsa doesn't hurt either.
Zesting, zesting, zesting. Why did I not pack my microplane zester with the other kitchen stuff? What was I thinking? Right now I'm thinking it would be worth another trip to the store tomorrow to get a new one. But, no, I don't want to wait.
Oops! I see now why I had that jug of Bacardi. Or should I say, "that Bacardi jug." It's full of peanut oil. :G: I got one of those five gallon things of peanut oil once at OSH. It was some amazingly great price, on sale at turkey frying season (don't ask). Since I use peanut oil almost exclusively for cooking, unless I want the olive oil taste and aroma, this seemed like a prize. And it was, because peanut oil in the supermarket, if you can even find it, is not cheap. Anyway, I was decanting the vast amount of peanut oil into anything I could find, including, it would seem, and empty Bacardi jug. Annoying now when I wanted to try a rum-based Limoncello, but a nice surprise otherwise, since my peanut oil supply is getting low.
In comparing Limoncello recipes, I see that most of them call for a 1:1 simple syrup. I wonder if you could make a 2(sugar):1 instead and use less of it, diluting the alchohol less but maintaining the same level of sweetness. I believe I shall give that a try.
So, Limoncello will be some with vodka, some with Bacardi (soon as I buy some), with 2:1 simple syrup. Pity it takes several weeks to find out how the variations worked out. I'll post the recipe then, assuming it's potable. I hope it is, or that I find my zester soon, because I don't think I'm up for all that zesting again without it, any time soon.
Riffing, more...I bet you could make a version of "rum" balls with Limoncello, just leave out the chocolate, for a really lemony bite. Or make "orangecello" and keep the chocolate. Mmmm. I love orange and chocolate. Or leave the chocolate out of the cookie portion, but roll it in melted chocolate. Drooling? Moi?