Tag Archives: limoncello

Boozy lemon & honey pots with blueberries…

My friend invited me over to lunch last weekend and as is very commonly becoming the norm, I was tasked with making the dessert. I decided to mix it up a bit and shunned the idea of baking anything, instead experimenting with a delicious sounding recipe for lemon and honey pots with blueberries that I’d seen in the February 2012 edition of Sainsbury’s magazine…

They sounded great and apart from the slightly fiddly task of making candied peel, were pretty simple. They also gave me the perfect excuse to make use of the last of my home made limoncello (recipe here)…

To give them a go all you’ll need is…

Finely grated zest and juice of 1 lemon

2 tbsp clear honey

2 tbsp limoncello (optional but highly recommended)

300ml double cream

1 large egg white

4 tbsp blueberries plus extra to decorate (apparently frozen ones are fine)

and to make the candied peel you’ll need…

Peel of 1 lemon, sliced into thin matchstick-like strips

100g caster sugar

I recommend starting on the candied peel first to get the fiddly bit out of the way. Use a vegetable peeler to take the rind off the lemon, be careful to only take the yellow layer and not any of the white pith as it’s really bitter. Slice each strip into long matchsticks. Put them in a pan of boiling water and blanch them for 30 seconds before draining and setting aside. Then put 100ml of water in a saucepan along with the caster sugar and bring to the boil. Leave it to bubble away until it starts getting syrupy. Add the peel to the syrup and leave to boil away for 10 minutes. Now comes the tricky bit…remove the strands of peel from the pan and lay them on some greaseproof paper to cool. I used some kitchen tongs that were large and unwieldy, making the task quite messy and arduous. The recipe suggested using tweezers but that just sounded ridiculous. I’m not sure what the perfect solution is but feel free to freestyle your own method 🙂

Now you need to start making the main part of the dessert…

In a small bowl, mix the lemon zest, juice, honey and limoncello together.

In another bowl, whisk the cream until it forms soft peaks. Do the same with the egg whites in a separate bowl. Then tip one into the other and fold together gently so that you retain the light airiness of the egg whites.

Finally fold in the lemon and honey mixture and make sure it’s well combined.

Put a spoonful of blueberries in the base of 4 glasses. Spoon in the creamy, lemony mixture and put in the fridge to chill until you’re ready to serve them.

Just before serving top each pot with a few strands of candied peel and a few more blueberries. I also toyed with the idea of drizzling a tiny bit of neat limoncello on top but decided against it at the last minute…maybe next time.

They were the perfect end to what had been quite a substantial dinner…light, zingy and creamy all in one!

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Homemade Christmas moonshine…

I know Christmas has passed but I couldn’t withhold the most successful of my homemade Christmas gifts…both alcohol based!

First up I made a litre of liquid Christmas pudding by infusing vodka with all the typical ingredients that you’d associate with the traditional dessert. I discovered the recipe on the Domestic Sluttery website here. It was unbelievable easy and the only effort required on my part was in chopping up the fruit to bung in a large bowl along with the vodka…

and then to stir it up and give it a bit of love every day…

sampling every now and again of course 😉 …

After a week, I used a piece of muslin and a funnel to decant it into a pretty bottle and hey presto…

My other seasonal concoction was a rather large batch of Limoncello, an Italian lemon liqueur, which originated from Southern Italy. It took slightly longer to prepare but was equally as easy. The recipe I used was from the BBC Good Food website here.

Basically all you need to make 2 litres is…

5 unwaxed lemons

1 litre of vodka

750g caster sugar

700ml boiling water

and some large receptacles for brewing your limoncello up in!

Simply zest your lemons, being careful not to get too carried away as you don’t want to include the bitter white pithy layer, just the bright yellow outer zest!

Put the zest in a large jar and pour over the vodka, seal and leave for a week, giving a gentle shake of encouragement daily…

After a week, put the sugar in a bowl and pour over the boiling water. Stir until it has fully dissolved. Without thinking I used golden caster sugar, which gave my limoncello a deeper colour than if I’d used the white variety…no harm done!

Add the sugar syrup to the vodka and lemon peel and leave to infuse for another week…don’t give up on the daily stir of encouragement…

Appearance-wise nothing much happened but the taste developed beautifully as time went on…

After a couple of weeks I strained my limoncello into pretty bottles and there you have it…

Limoncello is best served straight from the freezer as a digestif and it’s ridiculously delicious!

At this point I’d like to wish anyone who reads my inane food related ramblings a very Happy New Year! I for one can’t wait to see what 2012 brings…hopefully many more baking exploits and delicious meals! 🙂

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