The hardest part is waiting 8 weeks,
although with minimal effort
you'll reap rewards many
times over, as the flavors of these
three extracts can't be beat...
Yields: 4 oz. (1/2 cup) lemon extract 
Prep: 5 Mins.
Cure: 8 weeks

--1 (4 oz.) Mason jar with plastic lid (or lid and ring)


1 large, fresh lemon, washed and dried, then zest (do not include with bitter pith when zesting) 
1/2 cup quality vodka


Place your jar in a small saucepan, and cover with water.  Bring to boil for 10 minutes to sterilize.  Remove jar on a clean kitchen towel to cool and air dry. (If not using plastic lids as I am, be sure to sterilize your rings and lids as well.)

Meanwhile, zest lemon (not white pith as it is bitter) and place into bottom of the 4 oz. Mason jar.  Fill jar with vodka to within 1/4" of top of rim. Place lid on jar and close tightly, shake a few times, label, date and place it in a cool, dark cabinet. 

Let rest for 8 weeks, while occasionally shaking a couple times per week, which will become a darker yellow color over time.

After 8 weeks you can start using your homemade extract in recipes for custards, pies, tarts, breads, desserts, crepes, sauces, breakfast dishes, smoothies, and so on. If you would like some of the zest in your recipe, just shake the jar beforehand. – Enjoy!

-- Click here for: Vanilla Extract recipe

-- Click here for: Vanilla-Bourbon Extract recipe


Tips:  Use as much as you need, and when you have only 20% of the extract remaining you should replenish with more vodka and/or zest, and shake again. In addition, when you're using a fresh lemon zest in a recipe, add any leftover to the jar of homemade extract. If you continue to feed your extract in this manner, the extract will keep forever; simply remove some of the older zest if the jar becomes too crowded.

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