• Najwa Kronfel

Homemade Arak Limoncello

Yes, it’s that time of the year again, citrus season is here. Juicy lemons, sweet oranges or sour limes, they finally taste like they are supposed to. I love visiting other sites when it’s citrus season. Everybody gets really creative with their recipes, just take a look at THIS beautiful salad or THIS gorgeous dessert, and how about THIS cocktail? All very inspiring.

I am starting this season with a cocktail as well, limoncello. This is not your typical limoncello however, it comes with a twist, it’s made with arak. And what exactly is arak you ask? Well, lets say arak is the Middle Eastern answer to ouzo or pastis. Arak is a strong anise-distilled spirit and is usually mixed with water and ice to serve. I thought it could be fun to make limoncello with arak instead of vodka or other alcohols. 

I loved the outcome. This is the perfect thing to serve at a dinner party, It’s incredibly easy to make (although patience is required). The best way to serve it is  as cold as possible, place it in the freezer for a couple of hours or until it’s really cold. The citrus flavor mixed with the intense anise aroma of arak, makes this cocktail unique, exciting and refreshing. I can already see lots of Summer parties 🙂


10 lemons

1 bottle (750 ml) arak

4 cups cold water

Simple syrup

1 ¼ cup sugar

1 ¼ cup water

Peel the lemons with a vegetable peeler, making sure that none of the white pith is coming with it, if it does, remove it with a knife (the white pith can make the drink bitter). Place the peels in a pitcher and pour the arak over. Cover it very well with plastic wrap and put it away (at room temperature) for a week. After a week, strain it and discard the peels, set aside while you make the simple syrup. To make the syrup, place the sugar and water in a saucepan over medium heat and stir it until sugar is dissolved, let it cool completely. Once cooled, add the syrup to the limoncello and also add the remaining 2 cups of cold water. Stir and cover it and place it in the freezer until is very cold. Serve in small glasses. 

Note: You can also make this with vodka, just skipped the 4 cups of water at the end. Also, replace the lemon peels for orange peels to make arancello or you can even do a combination of both. 

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