Caramel Ice Cream Cannoli Cups
I am a member of the Daring Kitchen and I participate in the Daring Baker’s monthly challenges, which are revealed on the 27th of the month. Being so wrapped up with preparations for Thanksgiving dinner I did not even realize until late afternoon today that today is Nov. 27th.
The November 2009 Daring Bakers Challenge was chosen and hosted by Lisa Michele of Parsley, Sage, Desserts and Line Drives. She chose the Italian Pastry, Cannolo (Cannoli is plural), using the cookbooks Lidia’s Italian-American Kitchen by Lidia Matticchio Bastianich and The Sopranos Family Cookbook by Allen Rucker; recipes by Michelle Scicolone, as ingredient/direction guides. She added her own modifications/changes, so the recipe is not 100% verbatim from either book.
She says: Cannoli are known as Italian-American pastries, although the origin of cannoli dates back to Sicily, specifically Palermo, where it was prepared during Carnevale season, and according to lore, as a symbol of fertility. The cannoli is a fried, tube-shaped pastry shell (usually containing wine) filled with a creamy amalgamation of sweetened ricotta cheese, chocolate, candied fruit or zest, and sometimes nuts. Although not traditional, mascarpone cheese is also widely used, and in fact, makes for an even creamier filling when substituted for part of the ricotta, or by itself. However, cannoli can also be filled with pastry creams, mousses, whipped cream, ice cream etc. You could also add your choice of herbs, zests or spices to the dough, if desired. Marsala is the traditional wine used in cannoli dough, but any red or white wine will work fine, as it’s not only added for flavor or color, but to relax the gluten in the dough since it can be a stiff dough to work with.
I do not have the metal tubes that are traditionally used to shape the cannoli, so I formed small cannoli cups in a metal cupcake pan and baked them instead of frying. The cannoli was dipped in melted butterscotch chips and coconut. Typically the filling used has ricotta cheese in it, but for simplicity I filled these with ice cream instead. To finish, I drizzled caramel ice cream topping over the filled cannoli cups.
2 c. flour
2 Tbsp. sugar
1 tsp. cocoa
1/2 tsp. cinnamon
1/2 tsp. salt
3 Tbsp. vegetable oil
1 tsp. white wine vinegar
~1/2 c. any white or red wine
1 egg white
If frying: ~ 2 quarts of vegetable oil for frying
Mix flour, sugar, cocoa, cinnamon and salt. Stir in oil, vinegar and enough wine to make a soft dough. Knead dough until smooth. Shape into a ball, cover with plastic wrap and let rest in the fridge for at least 2 hours.
Roll dough until very thing (about 1/16-1/8″ thick). Cut out circles that are 3″-5″ in diameter. Roll circle into an oval. Oil outside of the cannoli tubes. Roll a dough oval from the long side around each tube/form and dab a little egg white on the dough where the edges overlap. Press to seal.
In a deep saucepan, pour oil to reach 3″ and heat to 375 degrees. Carefully lower a few fo the cannoli tubes into the hot oil. Do not crowd the pan. Fry until golden, about 2 minutes, turning them so that they brown evenly.
Lift a cannoli tube with a large slotted spoon, out of the oil and pull out of oil using tongs. Carefully remove the cannoli tube with open sides straight up and down so the oil flows back into pan. Place tube on paper towel to drain. Repeat with remaining tubes.
While still hot, grasp tubes with a potholder and pull cannoli shells off the tubes with tongs. Let the shells cool completely on the paper towels. Fill when cooled completely.
For my Caramel Ice Cream Cannoli Cups:
I used Zinfandel wine (my favorite, that’s what I had on hand). Roll out the dough and cut into circles. Press circles into a greased cupcake pan and bake at 350 degrees for 25-30 minutes.
Remove from pan and let cool completely.
Melt butterscotch chips in small bowl and dip the top edges of the cannoli cups in the melted butterscotch chips first and then in coconut. When the butterscotch has set, place a small scoop of ice cream in the cups and drizzle with caramel ice cream topping.