Not As Planned {Recipe: Homemade Creamy Limoncello}

For us, Easter Sunday did not go as planned. Eager to start the morning off on the right foot, the family woke up early and headed up to church for 7:30am Mass. Ready to participate in and enjoy the early morning Easter service, we settled into our pew and began the day. Half way through the service, Leah decided she was apparently not in the mood for church and started misbehaving. And, if you know Leah, when she decides she doesn’t want to do something or be somewhere she let’s the whole world know.

I quickly tried to hush her and took her out into the lobby. Stares from old grouchy women and judgmental people who forgot what it is like to have a 2 year old in church were plenty. Towards the end of mass when Leah and I were still in the lobby of church, I saw Nick peek back at me through the glass doors and I signaled that Leah and I were heading home… hopefully to wear her out on the walk so she would at least behave the rest of the day.

When everyone got home, we did our best to try and recover from the scene at church. Putting back on our happy faces, we went outside and let the kids find the eggs in the yard the Easter Bunny had left for them. Things were looking up and all was well for the rest of the morning! A small blip in the morning at church, but we recovered. I was feeling confident… yay us!

“Yay, us!” lasted until about 1pm that afternoon. Nick and I spent most of the day cooking, getting ready to welcome our good friends and neighbors over for a late Easter lunch / early dinner. It was at about 1pm…one hour before our guests were to arrive… that Nick put the pork loin into the oven for me. He then said, as he was checking the recipe to see what the timer should be set at, “You realize this has to cook for 2 hours?” Uh oh… I had hungry guests coming over in just a short while and I had completely misread the cooking time on the recipe! There was no away around it… our guests were going to be here and dinner would not be ready. Not a stellar move for this seasoned hostess!

Everyone got here and you know what? We made due. We sliced up one of the two loaves of homemade bread and shared it with Kerry Gold Butter. We munched on fruit and the deviled eggs my friend contributed. The kids played together, we chatted and all was well. Of course, would you believe that 2 hours later when the timer went off Nick went to check the pork loin and it was overdone! Ah well… it all still worked out and we had a delicious meal with our neighborhood family / friends.

The moral of my entire post is… best laid plans often don’t turn out the way they were meant to, however, there is absolutely nothing about yesterday I would have changed in the end. We enjoyed hanging out with some of my favorite people, were treated to a gorgeous day, a delicious meal, and our many blessings.

Yesterday was all about savoring the moments… the pork loin mishap and the walk home from church required me to slow down and take things in. Just like Limoncello… a drink that is not meant to be guzzled but slowly sipped and enjoyed as you savor what is going on around you.

Recipe: Creamy Limoncello (the non-creamy Limoncello was originally blogged on this post)

This recipe is my husband’s handiwork (the Limoncello) combined with a recipe I learned about when traveling to New Orleans with Zatarain’s earlier this year. The head chef of the John Besh restaurant, Domenica, let us enjoy creamy Limoncello, then went on to share what to do to turn regular Limoncello into creamy Limoncello.

  • 10 lemons
  • 1 (750-ml) bottle vodka
  • 3 1/2 cups water
  • 2 1/2 cups sugar
  • 1 can sweetened condensed milk
  1. Using a vegetable peeler remove the peel from the lemons in long strips (reserve the lemons for another use). Using a small sharp knife, trim away the white pith from the lemon peels; discard the pith.
  2. Place the lemon peels in a 2-quart pitcher. Pour the vodka over the peels and cover with plastic wrap. Steep the lemon peels in the vodka for 4 days at room temperature.
  3. Stir the water and sugar in a large saucepan over medium heat until the sugar dissolves, about 5 minutes. Cool completely. Pour the simple syrup over the vodka mixture. Cover and let stand at room temperature overnight.
  4. Strain the limoncello through a mesh strainer. Discard the peels. Transfer the limoncello to bottles. Seal the bottles and refrigerate until cold, at least 4 hours and up to 1 month.
  5. Before serving, pour prepared Limoncello and Sweetend Condensed Milk into a large pitcher. Whisk together until well combined. Serve very cold. Refrigerate remaining Creamy Limoncello.



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  1. says

    Limoncello is one of my favorite liqueurs to make; I’ve got a Meyer Lemon version brewing in my lab now (some might call it a garage). I’ve not tried a creamy version…now I have something different to look forward to!

  2. says

    I came very close to making a discreet exit during our Easter service too – my 4-year old wasn’t having it (and I didn’t dare even bring her little brother!). Oh well, we parents have gotten very used to adjusting our plans on the fly, haven’t we? :-)

  3. says

    Oh my gosh, I’d LOVE to try this. I love lemon ANYTHING!!

    Little Leah is such a doll. I guess when you’re born with those good looks, you expect certain accommodations to be made for you 😉 I just love that kid!!

  4. Jazmine says

    I really inspire reading your easter story…I know you had a great time last easter..Thanks for sharing this post..

  5. Pat Wogan says

    I love cookbook queen’s comment “certain accommodations” and think that fairly well describes Leah, doesn’t it? The kids looked so Easterish in their pictures. They are all adorable. Remember when Ella was Leah’s age. They are two of a kind, aren’t they. Smart little cookies…..BTW what were the grouchy ladies doing in the lobby anyway….

  6. Alexarie says

    Easter holidays are one of the best time of the year where we can spend more time with the family… We can ahve time for God and at the same time we can enjoy our holidays…

  7. says

    Creamy limoncello, hmm? I’m surprised – I would have thought that wouldn’t be good (and maybe that was what the title was referring to), because milk and citrus just don’t seem right together to me… but that was the part that worked out perfectly!

  8. says

    I love the pictures of your sweet children. And I definitely know what it is like to have one who is not afraid to show it when things are not going her way. As you know, it does get better…or at least the moments happen way less often. :) I love how you literally turned lemons into…well, limoncello. :) Have a great week, friend!

  9. Annette Friesen says

    I was enjoying my two little granddaughters over Easter and little two year old Millie did not want to cooperate the other night when heading to bed. Oh, the traumas of little ones. But yes, there are definitely greater things in life to be distressed about (as you know). Oh, and I am the gray haired lady who would have looked at you with love and sympathy as you left the church!

  10. jules p says

    Oh..what a day for you. I must say, though I do not know those whom you worship with, but I think their “glares” were not to be mean. First, mothers always feel sorry for younger mothers. (we might be old-but we never forget what it is like to have small children) Second, we are possibly looking to help you. I remember an older mother getting up to just help me out. That was really nice.
    And then lastly…we are just nosey. :)

    Glad the day ended up better than how it began!


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