Angela finds lemons everywhere in Sorrento, and brings a little reminder home with her
I’m reminded of my recent holiday in Sorrento every time I’m cooking at home. Because there at the side of my hob is the beautiful ceramic spoon rest I brought back as a souvenir of my stay. It is lavishly decorated with lemon, like so much of the part of Italy it came from!
Famous for lemons
Sorrento has long been famous for its lemons, and they really are everywhere. Printed on linens and tablecloths, painted on plates, crockery and ceramics, growing above your head wherever you go. They garnish your salad when you sit down to eat and, perhaps most famously, are in your glass at the end of a delicious dinner in the form of limoncello.
I have to confess I developed quite a taste for this sharp yet sweet liqueur, best served icy cold in tiny glasses. And I’ve even been inspired to look up a recipe to make my own version at home – it is, allegedly, very easy to prepare.
All that remains now is to discover whether it tastes quite the same under grey Scottish skies as it does beneath sunny Italian ones!
What I didn’t realise until I’d been there is that Sorrento lemons are a specific variety of lemon that is native to the Sorrento peninsula. They are medium to large in size, very fragrant and the oldest type of lemon found in Italy, having been grown there for over 500 years.
Wonderfully, the Italian name for them is “sfusato”, which means spindle, a reference to their shape.
Lemons are, of course, packed with vitamin C, and are also a source of potassium, magnesium, phosphorus and calcium. So drink up that limoncello – it’s positively good for you!