4 cups of flour
3/4 cup Crisco
1/2 cup sugar
20 tbsp of water or wine (there are 16 tbsp to a cup)
1/2 tsp. cinnamon
(makes approx. 50 cannolis)
The key to a good flaky shell is to NOT work the dough too much…”cut” the Crisco into the dry ingredients until the mixture is no bigger than pea sized, then add the egg and slowly stir in the water until it forms a ball.
Mom usually makes this in advance and refrigerates the dough. It’s easier to roll and work with when it’s cold. Roll it thin (using flour so it doesn’t stick), like less than an eight of an inch. Use a round cookie cutter (or a cup or a glass…anything round will do)…there are different sized tubes so you’ll have to experiment with the size of the circle you’re cutting. Wrap the cut circle around the tube and seal the edge with water…be sure the edges are sealed good because they tend to pop open when frying.
Cannoli Filling Recipe
* 3/4 cup cornstarch
* 4 cups milk
* 1 1/2 cups sugar
* 1 1/2 tsp almond extract
* 1 1/2 tsp vanilla extract
* 1 1/2 tsp cinnamon
* 1/2 cup semi-sweet chocolate chips
* 3 pounds ricotta cheese
* 1/2 cup toasted almonds, toasted
* 1/2 tsp orange zest
1. In a saucepan, slowly whisk 1 cup of the milk into the cornstarch. Whisk until smooth. Let sit about 20 minutes.
2. Add the remaining milk and sugar to the milk-starch and stir over a low heat. Continue stirring until it is thick and smooth. Remove from heat.
3. Stir in the almond and vanilla extracts. Place a piece of plastic wrap on the surface of the filling to avoid “skin” and allow to cool to room temperature.
4. Add the ricotta cheese, cinnamon, chocolate chips, almonds, and orange zest to the the cornstarch and pipe the filling into cannoli shells.
Note: Presentation is key to great cannoli. You can simply sprinkle with powdered sugar, or dip the ends of each filled cannoli into melted chocolate then chopped nuts. Don’t be afraid to be creative. Pull out the colored sugars, sprinkles, and candy confetti for a wild experience!