No need to split a regular size cannolo, because Cousin Donatella’s mini forms make just the right size for individual enjoyment. Convenient size, 3-1/2″ long and 1/2″ wide, made of durable 18/8 stainless steel that is dishwasher safe.
It’s never been easier to make good, homemade cannoli. Simply cut a circle of dough, wrap it around the stainless steel form and drop it in heated oil. Once cooled, remove the tube to add the filling. Pipe in all kinds of fillings to make a tasty and attractive platter of cannoli.
The cannolo (derivative of “canna,” meaning “tube” or “cane”) is a tubular shell, deep fried, then traditionally filled with ricotta cheese made from sheep’s milk. Cannoli come to us from the island of Sicily, the land of scrumptious desserts, where they have been a staple since around the 9th century. They are believed to have been introduced by Arabs who occupied the region during that time. Some believe that this delicacy dates back to before the time of Christ.
Today they are still made in pretty much the traditional way. However the sheep’s milk has largely been replaced by bovine milk in the ricotta cheese, and cream fillings have long been popular. You’ll even see the small finger-size cannoli in many Italian bakeries today.
Traditional giving required no less than one dozen mini cannoli in the gift package.
Cannoli Recipe 1
4 sifted cups flour
1 tablespoon sugar
1/4 teaspoon cinnamon
3/4 cup red wine
1 egg yolk, beaten slightly
Re-sift flour with sugar and cinnamon in a small heap on bread board. Make a well in center and pour wine into it. Stir from center out to mix.
Knead dough until smooth and stiff, about 15 minutes. (Kneading and rolling work best on a marble board or a regular board with a stiff cotton cover.) If dough still seems moist and sticky, knead in more flour. It must be quite stiff. If too dry to roll easily, add a few more drops of wine and knead in. Cover dough with a warm bowl and let stand two hours in a moderately cool place.
Roll out the dough as thin as paper. Cut into five-inch rounds and wrap each around a metal cannoli tube. (Cut about 3″ if to be used on the smaller cannoli tubes.) Wrap dough loosely around form so that about 1/4″ of the form protrudes at each end. Seal by brushing a little egg yolk (a feather brush works best) on the overlapping edge.
Fry two at a time in deep hot fat for one minute, or until browned on both sides. Lift out very carefully with a slotted spoon or tongs. Drain on absorbent paper. When cool, gently remove from the form and fill with the desired filling. Refrigerate after filling. Unfilled shells will keep about 6 weeks, boxed, in a cool dry place. Filled shells should be served soon after making.
3 pounds ricotta cheese
1-3/4 cups sifted confectioners sugar
1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
2 tablespoons minced candied citron
1/4 cup semi-sweet chocolate bits
Beat ricotta in blender or bowl for about a minute. Add sugar and beat until very light and creamy (about 5 minutes). Add cinnamon, citron and chocolate. Mix until thoroughly blended.
Filling may be made a day ahead of using, but must be refrigerated.
You can replace the citron with chopped nuts of your choice.
Cannoli Recipe 2
1 egg, well beaten
2 tbsp. sugar
1 tbsp. melted butter
1-1/2 cups sifted flour
Mix all ingredients together, roll out thin and cut into 5″squares (3″ for smaller cannoli forms). Wrap cornerwise around tubes. Fasten 2 corners together moistening with water. Fry in deep fat until golden brown and fill.
1 lb ricotta
1/4 cup chopped citron
1 square sweet, grated chocolate
Put ricotta through sieve, add sugar, add citron and chocolate
2 tbsp. butter or margarine
1/4 cup cream corn starch
3/4 cup sugar
1/2 tsp. salt
2 cups milk
2 egg yolks, slightly beaten
1 tsp. vanilla
Melt butter. Blend in cream corn starch, sugar and salt. Gradually add milk. Heat to boiling over direct heat. Stir into slightly beaten egg yolks. Return to heat and cook 2 minutes, stirring constantly. Add vanilla. Cool thoroughly. Makes 2 cups. Use as filling for cannoli, cream puffs, Boston cream pie, etc., or serve plain or with cream.
Cannoli Recipe 3
3 cups sifted all purpose flour
1/4 tsp. cinnamon
1 tbsp. sugar
3/4 cup port wine
1 egg yolk, slightly beaten
Salad oil or shortening for deep frying.
Sift flour, sugar, cinnamon. Add port. Blend with fork. Knead about 15 minutes until dough is smooth and stiff. Refrigerate, covered, about 2 hours. Slowly heat salad oil, 3/4″ deep in pan.
Roll one third of dough to paper thinness, making a 16″ round. Cut into 5″ circles (or 3″ for smaller cannoli forms). Wrap a circle loosely around cannoli form. Seal with egg yolk. Cook 2 at a time. Drain on paper towels. Carefully remove forms. Makes 24
3 lbs. ricotta cheese
2-1/2 cups confectioners sugar
1/4 cup semi-sweet chocolate pieces or grated sweet chocolate
2 tbsp. chopped citron
10 candied cherries, finely chopped.
1/2 tsp. cinnamon
Beat ricotta 1 minute with electric mixer. Add sugar, beat 1 minute. Add other ingredients and beat until blended. Refrigerate, covered, for 2 hours. Fill shells. Garnish ends with chopped pistachio nuts. Sprinkle with confectioners sugar.
Cannoli Recipe 4
1 cup flour
2 tbsp butter
2 tbsp sugar
Pinch of salt
1/4 cup white wine
Combine flour, butter, sugar as you would for pie pastry. Add the wine gradually. Knead dough only until it is smooth. Roll until thin as a noodle. (You may use pasta machine roller.) Cut into squares 2-1/2 to 3″. Use 5″ cannoli tubes. Place cannoli tubes diagonally on the squares. Wrap pastry around the form. Seal dough that overlaps with water. Press firmly. Deep fry in hot vegetable oil (375°F). Use pointed pliers to remove from pan. Hold the form with the pliers and give a gentle push with a fork to slip the fried cannoli off the form. Drain the pastry on paper towels. Cool the bubes before reusing. Do not fill cooled cannoli pastry until ready to be served.
1-1/2 cups fresh ricotta cheese
1/2 cup 10-X sugar
1 cup whipped cream
1/2 cup chocolate chips, chopped
1/2 cup candied fruit, finely minced
1 tsp vanilla or liqueur (Amaretto, Galliano)
Combine ricotta and sugar with vanilla, or liqueur. Fold in (reserve some for decoration) chopped chocolate chips and minced fruit. Using a pastry bag, without a tube, fill either side of cannoli. Decorate with reserved chocolate and fruit.
Shells and filling can be made ahead of time and assembled before being served. Makes 18 cannoli.
By Carmela Capellupo-Beaver, Calabria Region, in La Grande Tradizione Della Cucina Italiana, compiled by the Culinary Arts Committee of the Columbus ’92 Commission.
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