Instagram

Instagram did not return a 200.

Follow Me!

Cookies Dessert Family Traditions Italian cookies

Cannoli Teleportation

February 23, 2018

Have you ever tasted or smelled something that instantly took you back in time? Well, the other night I went back to being a 9-year-old tasting my mom’s homemade cannoli at Christmas time in our flour-dusted kitchen. It was cannoli teleportation.

(This was a post from several years ago, but since the holidays are hovering closer, I wanted to share this recipe again.)

I am a novice cannoli maker and was spurred into a cannoli frenzy because I promised a friend I’d bring them to an Italian dinner.  I’d only made cannoli shells one time before and didn’t quite have the hang of it.

Mom's recipe

I love the fact that her recipe is written on a notepad from my brother Bernie’s Insurance company.

It was a challenge because I had two recipes. One I’d written down myself, with input from Angelina Belculfine, my mom’s best friend and the most amazing baker. The other was in my mom’s handwriting. It’s framed on my dining room wall because it’s a classic.

Mom was adorable, but neither accurate, nor a great speller, so I wasn’t sure whether her teaspoon meant tablespoon, etc.  But I mostly trusted her and just went for it.

Then, I HAD to eat one because, how could I bring them tomorrow without knowing how they tasted? So I filled the smallest one, and dusted it with powdered sugar.

Cannoli beauty shotI’m certain mom was beaming because it tasted just like hers.  I ran upstairs and made my son try it because I wanted him to know the delicious Italian pastries I got to taste as a kid. He loved it.

So, once again, through food, I was teleported to 1965 and very happy to be in my mom’s New Brighton kitchen with powdered sugar all over me.

If you’d like to be teleported to 1965, below is her recipe. Mom loved making them with half chocolate filling and half vanilla because her favorites were from a store called Caputo’s, or possibly Cabuto’s (with Mom’s accent you could never be sure). I think she said it was in Pittsburgh, but I can’t find any store with that name now. However, I was able to find a recipe for cannoli filling from a website called CaputoBrothersCreamery.com.

They make their own shells, which is why they’re not giving the recipe. I like Mom’s shell recipe because they’re a little lighter than the ones you normally find in stores or online, and they have a touch of wine in them, which gives them a wonderful flavor.

Cannoli by Mamma Tunno

Yields1 Serving

Cannoli Shells
 2 ½ cups flour
 1 tbsp sugar
 1 tsp salt
 ½ cup Butter Flavor Crisco
 1 tbsp Butter Flavor Crisco
 2 eggs
 3 oz white wine
 1 additional beaten egg for binding the cannoli togethe
 1 qt oil (canola or peanut oil)
Cannoli Filling (Vanilla)
 1 32 ounce container of Galbani Ricotta
 3 cups powdered sugar
 2 sprinkles of cinnamon
  cup mini Chocolate chips
 1 tbsp finely chopped citron (optional)
Cannoli Filling (Chocolate)
 ½ of the vanilla cannoli filling
 ½ cup chocolate chips melted
 2 tbsp whipping cream

1

Mix together the flour, sugar, and salt. Once combined, add the Crisco, mixing it with your fingers. Once it’s pebbly, like pie dough add the eggs and wine. Mix well with your hands until combined. Wrap the dough in plastic so it doesn’t dry out.

2

In a large skillet or deep fryer, pour about 40 oz of oil. Heat it to 375 degrees and lightly grease the outside of 6 metal cannoli tubes.

3

While the oil is heating, roll out the dough to pie crust thickness, or slightly thinner, about 1/8 inch. With a rolling cookie cutter, cut a circle in the dough about six inches in diameter. Wrap it around the cannoli tube and where it overlaps, rub some of the beaten egg to seal the cannoli shell together. (I just sat the tube on the dough and rolled around it, eyeballing how much dough I would need. It doesn’t need to overlap too much — that was my mistake with the first several I fried.)

4

Then carefully place the dough-covered tube into the hot grease. Let it fry for about 3 to five minutes or until it’s golden brown. Carefully remove it from the pan. You can cook a few at once, but I didn’t do more than three, so I could keep an eye on them.

Once the tubes have cooled enough to touch, gently remove the metal cylinders, grease their outsides and make more cannoli until the dough is all used up.

5

Melt the chocolate chips in the microwave or on the stovetop and and add the whipping cream. Mix together until smooth, then blend it into the 1/2 white filling.

6

Now comes the fun part. Find 2 clean plastic Ziplock bags. (Or, use pastry bags.) Fill one with chocolate filling and one with vanilla. Snip off one end of the plastic bag and squeeze it to squirt the ricotta filling into separate ends of the cannolo.  (One is a cannolo, multiple are cannoli in Italian.)

7

Sprinkle the cannoli with powdered sugar and serve. Do not fill until ready to serve because they get soggy.

If you like, you can dip the ends into chocolate chips or pistachios, but I like them plain.  Enjoy!

Ingredients

Cannoli Shells
 2 ½ cups flour
 1 tbsp sugar
 1 tsp salt
 ½ cup Butter Flavor Crisco
 1 tbsp Butter Flavor Crisco
 2 eggs
 3 oz white wine
 1 additional beaten egg for binding the cannoli togethe
 1 qt oil (canola or peanut oil)
Cannoli Filling (Vanilla)
 1 32 ounce container of Galbani Ricotta
 3 cups powdered sugar
 2 sprinkles of cinnamon
  cup mini Chocolate chips
 1 tbsp finely chopped citron (optional)
Cannoli Filling (Chocolate)
 ½ of the vanilla cannoli filling
 ½ cup chocolate chips melted
 2 tbsp whipping cream

Directions

1

Mix together the flour, sugar, and salt. Once combined, add the Crisco, mixing it with your fingers. Once it’s pebbly, like pie dough add the eggs and wine. Mix well with your hands until combined. Wrap the dough in plastic so it doesn’t dry out.

2

In a large skillet or deep fryer, pour about 40 oz of oil. Heat it to 375 degrees and lightly grease the outside of 6 metal cannoli tubes.

3

While the oil is heating, roll out the dough to pie crust thickness, or slightly thinner, about 1/8 inch. With a rolling cookie cutter, cut a circle in the dough about six inches in diameter. Wrap it around the cannoli tube and where it overlaps, rub some of the beaten egg to seal the cannoli shell together. (I just sat the tube on the dough and rolled around it, eyeballing how much dough I would need. It doesn’t need to overlap too much — that was my mistake with the first several I fried.)

4

Then carefully place the dough-covered tube into the hot grease. Let it fry for about 3 to five minutes or until it’s golden brown. Carefully remove it from the pan. You can cook a few at once, but I didn’t do more than three, so I could keep an eye on them.

Once the tubes have cooled enough to touch, gently remove the metal cylinders, grease their outsides and make more cannoli until the dough is all used up.

5

Melt the chocolate chips in the microwave or on the stovetop and and add the whipping cream. Mix together until smooth, then blend it into the 1/2 white filling.

6

Now comes the fun part. Find 2 clean plastic Ziplock bags. (Or, use pastry bags.) Fill one with chocolate filling and one with vanilla. Snip off one end of the plastic bag and squeeze it to squirt the ricotta filling into separate ends of the cannolo.  (One is a cannolo, multiple are cannoli in Italian.)

7

Sprinkle the cannoli with powdered sugar and serve. Do not fill until ready to serve because they get soggy.

If you like, you can dip the ends into chocolate chips or pistachios, but I like them plain.  Enjoy!

Cannoli by Mamma Tunno

But be sure to change your shoes before you bake, I didn’t and now mine are a floured mess – just like Mom’s always were!Foured shoe and pantyhose.JPG

  • Reply
    Better Than Any Other Tiramisu! – At Fran's Table
    March 16, 2018 at 6:06 am

    […] ← Cannoli Teleportation […]

  • Reply
    Bernie Tunno
    February 23, 2018 at 9:14 pm

    They were yummy!

    • Reply
      Fran Tunno
      March 7, 2018 at 11:19 pm

      I will have to make them when I come back home, they’re not hard to make. Just messy.

  • Reply
    Pam Ellis
    February 23, 2018 at 2:42 pm

    Wish I had a bite. It looks delicious

    • Reply
      Fran Tunno
      March 7, 2018 at 11:18 pm

      Next time I make some, I’ll bring a few over! Yours will be filled with only chocolate.

  • Reply
    Donna Tunno
    February 23, 2018 at 8:19 am

    What a wonderful story! Teleportation – great word! So happy that you conquered the challenge of baking cannolis as good as Mother Mary. You go girl, keep bringing happiness to so many!

    • Reply
      Fran Tunno
      March 2, 2018 at 11:04 am

      I can’t wait to make them for you guys. You will love them!

    • Reply
      Fran Tunno
      March 7, 2018 at 11:19 pm

      I can’t wait to make them for you guys, they turned out really well. I was thrilled. Even a group of New Yorkers loved them.

  • Reply
    Fran Tunno
    February 23, 2018 at 7:11 am

    I actually loved it! Honestly, if I hadn’t become a writer, I would have been a baker I think. Can’t wait to see you!

  • Reply
    Nicol
    February 23, 2018 at 7:08 am

    Oh Fran, I was worried last night that I asked you to do too much when you were so busy this week, but this post makes me think maybe it was worth the visit! I love sharing good memories with you and am so glad you always share yours with us. I feel like I know your mom through you, so I am sure she is always beaming – and helping out with the occasional cannoli blessing too!

Leave a Reply to Bernie Tunno Cancel reply

%d bloggers like this: