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Italian walnut liqueur
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5 from 1 vote

Learn how to make Italian walnut liqueur (nocino) at home!

I know no other way to end an Italian meal that is more satisfying than a good, homemade, nocino!
Prep Time1 hr
Resting time90 d
Total Time90 d 1 hr
Course: Amaro
Cuisine: Bolognese, Italian, Modenese, Mountaineer
Keyword: Amaro, digestive, Regional, Walnuts
Servings: 30 people
Calories: 100kcal
Author: Roberto
Cost: $ 0.5

Equipment

  • a large glass jar
  • a chopping board
  • oven paper or similar
  • a sharp knife
  • a funnel
  • a coffee filter or some thick cotton tissue

Ingredients

  • 35 green walnuts harvested on June 24th (Northern emisphere)
  • 1 liter pure grain alcohol
  • 750 gr sugar
  • 1 stick cinnamon (optional)
  • 4-5 cloves (optional)

Instructions

  • On June 24th (in Italy), harvest the young walnuts. Clean them and cut each of them in 4 pieces. Be aware that green walnuts stinks are forever, so behave accordingly. I personally use some oven paper to cover the chopping board and wear old clothes.
    Homemade nocino - cut the green walnuts
  • Put all the cut walnuts in a large glass jar and cover them with the sugar. Seal the jar. Leave the jar in full sunlight for 2 days.
    Homemade nocino - sugar covered walnuts
  • After 2 days, open the jar: you will find that sugar has melted into a dark liquid.
    Homemade nocino - after the sun
  • Get the cinnamon stick and the cloves ready. This my quantity (optional) for 1 liter alcohol.
    Homemade nocino - cinnamon and cloves
  • Drop the spices and pour the alcohol into the jar. Leave the jar, sealed, near a window, for at least 2 months, ideally 3-4. I usually go for 90-95 days. It's important to shake it from time to time and that the jar receives some sunlight every day for a few hours.
  • After this long rest, it's time to filter your precious nocino! Using a funnel and a coffee filter (and some patience... yes, this liqueur is all about patience!) remove all the liquid from the jar.
  • Nocino will be better after at least one month in the bottles. Traditionally, the production started in June was tasted for Christmas! Personally, I find it already great after 2-3 weeks in the bottles. Enjoy!
    Italian walnut liqueur
  • PS at the end, only the walnuts, now completely black, will remain in the jar. Do you think that Italian tradition will throw them away? Not at all! But this is the end of this recipe.. and the beginning of a new one. Coming soon ;)
    Homemade nocino - walnuts leftover

Notes

- hard to say how many servings from this recipe, it heavily depends on how good you will be at stopping ;) For sure, with this ingredients you will get between 1.5 and 2 liters of nocino
- consistently, the cost I can give you is for the whole preparation. Since I harvest the walnuts into the wild, alcohol is my only cost (about 15$ in Italy).