Leggi questo post in: Italiano
one of the nice things about living in southern italy? every so often our friends give us massive quantities of citrus fruits that we don’t know what to do with. so quite often i end up making liquor or marmalade. for example, with lemons i make limoncello and lemon ginger marmalade. this year we were buried with oranges. and i couldn’t squeeze fresh orange juice anymore because it started bothering my stomach. so the first thing to do with them was to make arancello! (orange liquor)
i had my in-laws’ recipe, but i my curiosity was piqued by this arancello recipe with added spices. i was also intrigued by the face that it called not for a syrup made after infusing the peels in alcohol, but mixing everything together at the beginning, but i was too worried about ruining it all. then i always change recipes because i hate liquors and marmalades that are too sweet. so i did it my way. two times, my way, but different ways.
the first time i washed the organic fruit well and, with a potato peeler (you don’t want the white part under the external peel), i peeled 8 oranges and 4 lemons (super fresh, just picked). i soaked the peels, 2 pieces of cinnamon, 4 bay leaves and 4 cloves in 1 liter of alcohol in a hermetically sealed jar in the dark for 2 – 3 weeks. when this time was up, i made a syrup boiling 700 grams of sugar in 1 liter of water for 15 minutes. when it was cooled, i filtered the alcohol with some gauze in a funnel into the syrup and put it all back into the hermetically sealed jars in the dark. after another 5 days, i refiltered it into bottles. it needs to stand a bit, at least a couple of months, but the longer it stands, the yummier it gets. (we’re now finishing up a bottle of limoncello that i’d made in 2006 which i’d forgotten about and it’s fantastic… much better than the one i made in 2010.)
see what a gorgeous color the liquor is? just… it’s strong. i mean, really really strong. i’m sure many people would like it, but it’s not quite to my liking.
so the second time i used the same procedure, but with different quantities. this time there were the peels of 12 oranges and 4 lemons, 2 pieces of cinnamon, 2 bay leaves, 2 cloves in a liter of alcohol in the dark for 2 – 3 weeks. then the syrup made with 1100 grams of sugar and 1.5 liters of water.
this version is much cloudier and has more residue (as you can see in the photo with mount vesuvius in the background), but it clears up with time. and the flavor is amazing, already after just the first 5 days when i bottled it. good thing i made quite a bit… i think i’ll be giving some of this liquor away for gifts!
to make arancello, you just use the peels of the fruit. after filtering, i put them in a little container to let out their lovely scent in our otherwise stinky home. they dry up pretty quickly, but i like them anyway.
and the rest of the fruit left over? orange marmalade, of course! but that will be for the next time….