Cannoli Filling

CANNOLI SHELL RECIPE

I am posting this recipe in two parts for a few reasons, primary because with the shells recipe and the filling, this becomes a grossu entry.  Also, if you are using store purchased cannoli shells, you won’t need to weed through the shell recipe to make filling.

The filling for cannoli has a very simple base recipe that allows you to get very creative.  After you create the base, you can fold in diced dried candied fruit – such as you would use for fruit cakes, chocolate chips, shaved candy bars – I prefer Andes mint shavings, minced nuts – like pistachio, spices – like cinnamon or nutmeg, liquor – such as Kahlua or brandy or rum, citrus zest – oranges work well, marachino cherries, or you can leave it plain.  Keep in mind that a cannolo is about five inches long and so your filling is four inches long by one inch diameter – in other words, a little goes a long way.

When filling cannoli, only do it right before serving, as the filling can make the shell soggy.  It is also best if you chill the filling in your pastry bag (or as you will see me use, a zip loc baggie) for about 20 minutes in the freezer before filling, so that it is very firm.

Ricotta should be whole milk, not even reduced fat.  The skim or low fat ricotta tends to have more run off which will cause the filling to be more runny – not a good thing at all.

You can dress up your serving plate with a powdered sugar dusted paper doily, drizzled melted chocolate, or powdered sugar.  I serve mine with a fork, but that is more for just scooping up any filling that falls out.  Cannoli was meant to be picked up and eaten as it is a carnival treat in Sicily.

IngredientsCIMG2860

1     15 oz. container of whole milk ricotta

3/4 cup powdered sugar

  • In a large mixing bowl, blend both ingredients throughly on low speed with an electric mixer.
  • Do not over beat, only beat until mixed.
  • Using a spatula, fold in any selected add ins.
  • Pack filling into an air tight container or pastry bag.
  • Chill before using to fill cannoli tubes.

If using add ins, I have listed below the measuring amount that you want to use.  Remember for all solid add ins, to reduce the amount of each if you are adding in more than one:

  • 1/2 teaspoon cinnamon*
  • 1 teaspoon liquor
  • 1 tablespoon dried candied fruit, diced
  • 1 tablespoon citrus zest
  • 1 tablespoon semi-sweet chocolate chips
  • 1 tablespoon coconut, shaved
  • 1 tablespoon pistachio nuts, minced
  • 1 teaspoon ice cream sprinkles
  • 1 tablespoon chocolate candy bar, shaved or grated

*McCormick makes a cinnamon spice with a built in grater that is awesome for grinding fresh cinnamon.  Each bottle is less than $2 and I absolutely love this!

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