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  • Writer's pictureCulinary Cam

Nocino, Italian Green Walnut Liqueur

Updated: Jul 3

I make this every year, but decided to share it here for the 2024 Alphabet Challenge...for the letter N. This is the part of our 2024 project: The Alphabet Challenge. Hosted by Wendy of A Day in the Life on the Farm, I thought this would be a fun culinary adventure. We will be posting every two weeks. I hope you follow along...or join in as you can. This should be fun.



N is for...


Nocino


Sometimes I look at what comes out of my kitchen and think: if someone didn't know me, they would probably picture some little Nonna! I finally bottled up my homemade witch brews v. 2023. Acqua Santa (elderflower-lemon) and Nocino (green walnut). Cin cin!


A word of warning: the walnuts will stain your fingers as you cut and prep. "Witchy hands," the boys used to call them. Yeah, whatever. My friends like my witchy brews! But if you're concerned about the staining, wear gloves! This is a three-part process. Be patient...it's worth every week of waiting. I promise.



Ingredients

  • 3 pounds green walnuts (they are in season, in California anyway, from June to August, usually)

  • 2 cinnamon sticks

  • peels from 2 organic lemons (I used Meyer lemon because my mom has a tree in her yard)

  • 6 cardamom pods, cracked open

  • 1 vanilla bean, split

  • a few fresh bay leaves (optional)

  • 1.75 liters vodka

  • 5 cups organic granulated sugar

  • 5 cups water



Procedure

Part I

Quarter the green walnuts lengthwise. Add the cut walnuts, cinnamon sticks, lemon peels, cardamom, and vanilla bean to the lidded glass container. Pour the vodka over the top of the ingredients. Cover and give the container a good shake and let it sit for 6 to 8 weeks.


Part II

Strain the liquid from the solids using a cheesecloth lined strainer. You can strain it again if you like. Pour the strained liquid back into the container. Add the sugar and water to a medium saucepan and cook until all of the sugar has dissolved. Let simple syrup mixture cool to room temperature. Add the cooled simple syrup to the liquid already in the container. Cover and give the mixture a good shake. Let sit for another 6 to 8 weeks.


Part III

After this second aging you can bottle and drink your nocino. The longer you let the bottled nocino set, the more smooth it will taste. Serve chilled or at room temperature.


Here's one bottling that I did for teachers' gifts in 2019.



The Alphabet Challenge So Far...

My posts are below with links to everyone else's recipes. I skipped letter 'F' apparently. Enjoy!


36 views17 comments

17 commentaires


Radha R
Radha R
6 days ago

Wow! I haven't seen green walnuts. This recipe sounds simple amazing and I could use it in multiple ways. Awesome!

J'aime

srushtonkl
06 juil.

I don't think I've ever seen green walnuts but when we lived in France, we had a hazelnut tree that now I'm thinking I could have made liqueur with. Opportunity missed! I have seen green almonds just recently. Thoughts on using those?

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Camilla M. Mann
Camilla M. Mann
07 juil.
En réponse à

I would definitely try the green almonds! It might be more of an amaretto kinda liqueur.

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cdelawder12
cdelawder12
05 juil.

We have a few black walnut trees outside. We're constantly collecting the walnuts that fall and relocating them to a central location for the squirrels to enjoy so that we don't break an ankle walking on them. The squirrels might get a bit mad at me if I start using their walnuts to make this liqueur...but I bet it would be worth their anger to try this recipe!!!

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Camilla M. Mann
Camilla M. Mann
07 juil.
En réponse à

Definitely!

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Jolene Martinelli
Jolene Martinelli
05 juil.

You certainly cast a delicious spell with those witchy fingers!

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Camilla M. Mann
Camilla M. Mann
07 juil.
En réponse à

Right? It always disturbed my kids. Too funny.

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Karen Kerr
Karen Kerr
03 juil.

What a perfect gift! I've never actually seen a green walnut IRL but I'll have to find them.

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Camilla M. Mann
Camilla M. Mann
07 juil.
En réponse à

Definitely keep an eye out. They are worth it.

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