These festive cannolis follow traditional technique on the inside, but jazz it for the holidays with a sparkly citrus sugar dip on one end and candied pistachios adding extra crunch on the other! Beautiful to look at and addictive to eat. Join us for a taste of Italy!
Prep Time: 1 hour
Cook Time: 20 minutes
- 2 cups all-purpose flour
- 2 tablespoons granulated sugar
- 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
- 2 tablespoons unsalted butter, cold and diced
- 1 large egg
- 1/2 cup dry white wine
- Vegetable oil, for frying
- Powdered sugar, for dusting
- 2 cups fresh whole milk ricotta cheese, strained
- 1/2 cup powdered sugar, plus more for dusting
- 1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 1/4 cup mini chocolate chips or chopped dark chocolate
- Zest of one orange (optional)
- 1/2 cup granulated sugar
- Zest of 2 oranges, tangerines, or mandarins
- 1/2 cup shelled pistachios
- 1/4 cup granulated sugar
- 2 tablespoons water
- Pinch of salt
- Mix and form your cannoli shells: In a large mixing bowl, combine the flour, sugar, and salt. Cut in the cold butter until the mixture resembles coarse crumbs. Stir in the egg and wine to form a dough. Knead until smooth, then wrap in plastic and let it rest at room temperature for 30 minutes. After resting, roll the dough out very thin (about 1/8 inch thickness) on a floured surface. Cut out 4-inch circles from the dough. Wrap each circle of dough around a cannoli form (metal tube).
- Fry. Heat the vegetable oil in a deep fryer or large pot to 350°F (175°C). Fry the dough-wrapped forms, turning occasionally, until golden brown, about 2 minutes. Drain on paper towels and let cool slightly before gently removing the tubes.
- Make the ricotta filling: In a mixing bowl, combine the strained ricotta, powdered sugar, and vanilla extract until smooth. Fold in the chocolate chips and orange zest if using. Transfer the mixture to a pastry bag fitted with a wide tip.
- Prep the orange sugar: Thoroughly wash and dry the citrus. Using a fine grater or zester, grate the zest of the citrus, avoiding the white pith as it’s bitter. Combine the zest with the granulated sugar in a bowl. Using your fingers, rub the zest into the sugar to release the oils and flavor. This also helps to evenly distribute the zest throughout the sugar. Spread the sugar out on a baking sheet and let it sit at room temperature uncovered for about 1 hour or until it’s dry to the touch. Once dry, you can pulse it in a food processor for a finer texture or use it as is for a more rustic look.
- Candy your pistachios: Preheat your oven to 300°F (150°C). Line a baking sheet with parchment paper. In a small saucepan, combine the sugar, water, and salt. Stir over medium heat until the sugar dissolves. Add the pistachios to the saucepan, and continue to cook, stirring constantly until the syrup thickens and fully coats the pistachios, about 3-5 minutes.
Transfer the coated pistachios onto the prepared baking sheet, spreading them out in a single layer. Bake the pistachios for about 10-15 minutes, or until they are golden and the
coating is crisp. Make sure to watch them closely to prevent burning. Remove from the oven and allow them to cool completely. As they cool, the sugar coating will harden. Once cool, chop them roughly and store in an air-tight container.
- Assemble the cannolis: Cut the tip off of the piping bag and fill the cannoli shells from both ends. Dip one side of the cannoli in the chopped candied pistachios and the other end in the orange sugar.