I wanna come down from this cloud
April 7, 2011 11:01 AM Subscribe
Why is my lemoncello cloudy? When I combine the simple sugar and the lemon infused alcohol, both of which are very transparent (although one is a luminous yellow) the resulting mixture becomes instantly cloudy. Can anyone explain why? For bonus points can you suggest a way to minimize this?
posted by Lame_username to food & drink (25 answers total) 17 users marked this as a favorite
Commercial lemoncellos are quite clear, so I know that it is possible. In case the details are important, I will describe my basic process in some detail:
I take 190 proof grain alcohol and pass it through a Brita filter as many times as I have the patience for (normally five). I then make an infusion with lemon peel, which is either zested or peeled with a veggie peeler and let that soak for a month or so. I then make a simple syrup with a roughly 5:4 ratio of distilled water to cane sugar, which becomes perfectly clear when I heat it. I filter out the lemon peel with repeated passes through a coffee filter (usually five passes)
However, as soon as I introduce even a small amount of the syrup to the alcohol, the brilliant transparent yellow alcohol turns to a cloudy yellow mixture. I find that the liquid sometimes becomes clear again after many, many months, but not always. I've noticed that zested lemon liquor is more cloudy than peeled and I know that if you only let the lemon infuse for a short period this doesn't happen (but it also doesn't taste nearly as good).