Wednesday, May 22, 2013

When Life Hands You Lemons... Make Lemon Infused Vinegar!

Now let me just start off by stating that I *know* vinegar is one of the best all-purpose natural cleaners there is... I know.
BUT it's the smell that has always deterred me from using it on a regular basis. Don't get me wrong, I loooooove the tart, mouth-smacky-ness of it in food, but I don't want my home to smell like it...
So when I came across some recipes for lemon infused vinegar, I was really skeptical.
I couldn't imagine that even a few weeks of steeping citrus peels in vinegar could not only make it even better as a cleaner, but smell GREAT.
Well, about a month ago, I had some leftover lemon peels after making some lemonade, and I figured I'd give it a go...

4 weeks later (I admit it, I tend to start projects, and then forget about them), I remembered I had my lemon peel / vinegar mix under my kitchen counter, and put it to test.
The harsh smell is GONE, and it cleans better than anything I have ever used before.

Wanna' try? Here's how you can make your own:
  • Citrus peels* (I used 2 lemons, but you can use lime, orange, grapefruit, or a combination -- whatever you prefer)
  • White vinegar
  • A lidded jar (make sure it has a tight seal, as you don't want the vinegar splooshing out when you give it the occasional shake).
...And that's it.

Add the peels to the jar, and pour over enough vinegar to cover the peels.
Put the lid on, and forget about it for awhile -- although it couldn't hurt to give it a good shake every day or so.
If you're like me, you'll forget about this for a month (no harm done -- I'll probably continue to infuse for 4 weeks, considering how incredibly lemony it has become), but it will be ready to use in as soon as two weeks.

Strain out lemon bits through a fine mesh strainer, add the pulp-free vinegar into an empty spray bottle, and prepare to have your mind (and grime) blown away.

* - If you can use organic lemons for this, please do -- otherwise you'll also be infusing your vinegar with whatever has been sprayed on the non-organic lemons (pesticides, chemicals... ew). No bueno.
If you can't (or don't want to) use organic lemons, scrubbing the lemon really well before use should suffice.

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