cannoli time

 Cannoli had been on my ‘to do’ list for a couple of years now. Those tasty little Sicilian pastry desserts, with a crispy outer shell and sweet soft goodness inside. Ricotta, mascarpone, custard fillings…mmm, there is a lot to like about cannoli. A whole lot.

Now when the lovely Joanna from Zeb Bakes sent me some cannoli moulds, well it was a sign, wasn’t it.

It was time….it was cannoli time.

But which recipe to try? On the internet there were so many to choose from, I couldn’t decide, so after reading about twenty different recipes, it was back to hack baking again. I played. Maybe not the wisest choice considering they were supposed to be a little tricky, but my choice none the less. So, below is how I did it. These are not perfect. They’re good, but not perfect. They need tweaking, so they will definitely be made again.

The pastry was good, (smelt fantastic with the marsala in it) but I didn’t get that complete crispness that I was after. I’m not sure if it’s because I didn’t deep fry them, only shallow fried them, and I did have a bit of trouble getting the right temperature of the oil to cook them in. Or it was the pastry after all?

I liked the mixture inside, (it’s mascarpone right, and we’re friends from waaaay back.) The jam added was a little taste tweak, which worked. I would have added some lemon zest as well, but was all out.

Next time though.  And yes, there most assuredly will be a next, cannoli time.



Cannoli dough

400g plain flour

125g butter

85g (1/2 cup) icing sugar

125mls marsala

1 egg

In a food processor, pulse icing sugar, butter and flour. Until it looks like bread crumbs. Tip out to a bowl and add marsala and beaten egg. Mix, and bring together quickly with one hand. Form a ball, cover in cling wrap and pop in the fridge over night.

Next day, roll out in circles as thin as you can get without tearing, cutting circle sizes to fit cannoli molds.

Lightly oil cannoli molds with vegetable oil, (just the once is all that is needed.) Wrap the dough around and cook in oil until golden. Pull mould out while still hot/warm, (as if it’s cold it will get stuck.) Allow to cool on a rack.

Ricotta mixture

250g ricotta

250g mascarpone

85g (1/2 cup) icing sugar

1 tsp vanilla

1 heaped tbls strawberry jam

Whip it all up, for a minute or two and then pipe. One side and then the other.

Only pipe the mixture just before serving. Dust with icing sugar.

Unfilled cannoli shells will last for about a week in an air tight container.


21 thoughts on “cannoli time

  1. You had me at cannoli.

    Surely one of the most sublime combination of textures and flavours – I went through a mountain of these when I was in Sicily some years ago, including some homemade numbers by a friend’s nonna. It’s been good to come back to Sydney discover some good ones in Haberfield and Newtown….and now yours (hint, hint). They look divine Brydie.


  2. They look good. I love the casual trail of newly piped filling and the delicate dusting of sugar, they remind me a little of how brandy snaps look, which I used to make as a kid. I confess I’ve never made them or eaten them though I live next door to a Sicilian lady, maybe I should ask her to show me. One day…. xx and thanks for the link 🙂


    • I’d be curious to know what your Sicilian lady thought of my dough recipe Joanna. I’m still wondering whether it’s way out of line which is why it didn’t crisp up like I wanted it to…
      Thanks again for the moulds too 🙂


  3. I, too, received the molds. (thanks, Joanna!)
    But you are much braver than I- I’m like an old Ent and have to ponder and think and play with the idea and the recipe choice much longer than you!
    You have inspired me- to try these before Christmas, Brydie!
    ;D They do look great!


  4. they are also on my to do list since I got the cannoli forms and actually got to taste the amazing “real thing” during a recent trip to Sicily. I agree, the pastry look too soft. but still a great result for a first try. this is not the easiest of things to do, and I can assure you that most Italians never even dared trying. beautiful pictures!


  5. Pingback: eating Italian style « Cityhippyfarmgirl

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