Sunday, August 2, 2009

R2R: Bruschetta and Limoncello

oops, this got saved as draft instead of published.

This month's challenge is brought to you by Lauren of Fried Pickles and Ice Cream.
A little summer taste of Italy! A delicious and simple antipasta (appetizer), Bruschetta and a digestivo (after-dinner drink), Limoncello.

(4 servings)
4 slices Rustic Bread
2 cups chopped Roma Tomatoes
1 clove Garlic
4 to 8 leaves Basil
Extra Virgin Olive Oil
Sea salt

-Heat grill or grill pan to medium high heat
-Slice THICK pieces of bread
-Place bread on grill until each side has a nice golden color
-Rub garlic on top side of each bread piece
-Pile tomatoes on
-sprinkle one big pinch of salt per piece on top of the tomatoes
-generously drizzle oilve oil on top of tomatoes (about 2 to 3 tablespoons per piece)
-add basil to the top

1 liter grain alcohol
5 1/2 cups water
5 large lemons (or 10 small lemons)
2 1/2 cups sugar

-Gently wash lemons in cool water to remove any dirt
-Peel away zest from lemon leaving as little pith (the white stiff) as possible.
-Put peels in a large sealed jar or container (I reused the alcohol bottle)
-Pour alcohol over peels and place container in a cool place.
-Leave the mixture for 7 days.
-Every day give the container a little swirl. You will see the alcohol become darker and darker every day.
-After 7 days, strain the alcohol by using a coffee filter.
-Prepare the simple syrup. Bring the water to a boil and add the sugar to dissolve.
-Mix the syrup with the alcohol. BE CAREFUL... DO NOT DO THIS NEAR A FLAME!!!
-Pour the limoncello into bottles or containers. Let cool completely. Store in the freezer until ready to serve!
*Date your limoncello. After a year it will no longer be delicious.

Temper's Take:
The brushetta was wonderful, like Lauren said the garlic just melted into the bread and the tomatoes and olive oil were lovely. Unfortunately it was apparently a bad week for basil and what I found i wouldn't eat, so I let a little dried sit in the olive oil for several hours and decorated the top with Kale. I am thinking this would be a good excuse to invest in some really nice olive oil and it would be a great starter for an evening of grilling. It was a hit with us.
The limoncello suffered from car troubles and a dry county, with no car I couldn't find anyone to drive me an hour to the closest liqueur store, so i tried putting my lemon peels in a simple syrup. It was pretty and turned a delicate yellow color almost immediately. It did not however darken and a week later I had lemon cleaner. So the lesson i learned was sugar does not solve everything and procrastination is bad, cause I could see how it would be a scrumptious tipple, I just never reached that point.


Sara said...

This is definitely a good reason to invest in some good olive oil, you can really taste the difference here.

Jeez, 1 hour to the closest liquor store! I am not a drinker at all, but I think my boyfriend would have a coronary about that. When we bought our place in DC, our real estate search had to be within 1 mile of his favorite bar so he would be able to walk there without issue. Yes, that is a true story, and a little sad. :)

Lori said...

Sara- better that than drinking and driving.

Temperance- Great job. I so love my good olive oil. I am the truest Italian in those regards. I even have olive oil soap for my face. I cook with it. My husband has it with bread every day.

I am so sorry you are not able to enjoy some limoncello.

Natashya said...

No booze in the house? Wow.
I have a fully stocked bar in the basement. Very handy, and you don't have to worry about getting home!
Your pics look great!

Debyi said...

Your bruschetta looks mighty tasty! Bummer about the limoncello. Its one of my favorites.