'Tis the season to be jolly, so this week I thought I'd do an alcoholic 'new thing' and make my own Limoncello. I first tasted this in Italy, many years ago and after initially thinking it was far too sweet, I soon got the hang of it and now love the stuff. I hadn't realized how easy it is to make though, until I came across the recipe in my 'Kirstie's Homemade Christmas' library book.
Basically, it's lemon zest and juice, sugar, water and vodka. The lemon zest, water and sugar go into a pan and are heated until the sugar dissolves and then simmered for 15 minutes.
Whilst it is simmering, juice the lemons, then, when the 15 minutes are up, add the juice, along with the vodka, cover and leave for 1 week to infuse.
Then strain through a fine sieve or muslin cloth and decant into a pretty bottle. It apparently lasts for 6 months, but I'm not sure it will last that long around here.
I made mine this morning, so it should be ready for straining on Boxing Day - all ready for a nice little tipple after our walk maybe?
Other happies this week include:
Putting up the tree:
It's a bit of a mishmash of items the girls have made at home or school over the years and a few shop bought decorations - the girls sometimes get a new one in their stockings. We only realized this year that there are only 2 actual 'baubles' on our tree - one which was a present for L from a school friend, and one of ice-skating choristers, which we bought at Winchester Cathedral a few years ago, after we were fortunate enough to see the boys in their red surplices (not sure if this is the right word!) zooming around the rink.
Also this week:
Celebrating L's 21st birthday (a little late, as we had to wait for the end of term) with a trip to London. We started off with Afternoon Tea at The Langham:
Champagne and non-alcoholic cocktails to start, followed by a red pepper brulee amuse bouche (my bouche was very amused!), a selection of yummy veggie sandwiches and then more scones and cake than you could shake a stick at. I had tipped them off beforehand about it being L's birthday and they presented her with a birthday cupcake whilst the pianist played 'Happy Birthday'.
We then saw this in the evening:
It was brilliant - what you initially thought was quite a basic set turned out to be quite spectacular and the acting was excellent.
Walking to the theatre, we passed a bit of Banksy graffiti. I normally hate graffiti with a passion but this little rat was rather sweet. The council had tried to protect it by covering the wall in perspex. Unfortunately, they hadn't sealed it at the top and rain water is now seeping down the gap and damaging the paintwork!
Doing a festive jigsaw puzzle or 2. We had Lucy's boyfriend, J, staying with us this week. It turns out that he is VERY good at puzzles. What I thought would take a few days in the run up to Christmas, he managed to complete in about an hour!
Getting my hooked picture framed. Now I just need to find a suitable place to hang it:
Finally, a trip into Winchester to visit the Christmas market:
We had hoped to go ice-skating but it had rained overnight and the rink had enormous puddles on the surface. People who fell over were getting soaked, so, sadly, we decided to give it a miss this year.
Anyway, that's all for this week. I'm hoping to fit in my last 'new thing' before the 28th. I have a feeling that it may be another alcoholic one!
In the meantime have a truly wonderful Christmas week. Toodle Pip for now. x