How To Make Sicilian Cannoli | Tasting Table Recipe

How to make the classic Italian treat at home

Katherine Thompson, pastry chef at New York's dell'anima, folds orange zest and bittersweet chocolate into the silky-smooth ricotta filling for her cannoli. The dough also gets a touch of Madeira wine, which imparts a delightfully caramelly, nutty flavor.

To learn more, read "Holy Cannoli.

Recipe from the Tasting Table Test Kitchen

Sicilian Cannoli
5 from 7 ratings
Learn to make cannoli from Kate Thompson of New York's dell'anima. 
Prep Time
Cook Time
Total time: 16 minutes
  • For the Shells
  • 1¼ cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 large egg
  • 1 large egg yolk
  • 2 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted
  • ¼ cup Madeira wine
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • Canola oil, for frying
  • For the Filling
  • ½ cup heavy cream
  • 2 cups whole-milk ricotta
  • 5 tablespoons confectioners' sugar
  • ½ cup finely chopped bittersweet chocolate
  • 2 teaspoons orange zest
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • 3 tablespoons granulated sugar
  • Pistachios, finely chopped, to garnish
  • Equipment
  • Metal cannoli dowels
  1. Make the shells: Place the flour, egg, egg yolk, butter, Madeira and salt in a food processor and pulse until a dough forms. Gather the dough into a ball. Form the dough into a flat disc; wrap the dough in plastic wrap and chill for 30 minutes.
  2. Meanwhile, make the filling: Place the cream in a medium bowl and whisk until soft peaks form. Set aside in the refrigerator. In a separate bowl or the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, combine the ricotta, confectioners' sugar, chocolate, orange zest, salt and granulated sugar and mix until well combined. Using a rubber spatula, fold in the reserved whipped cream. Set aside in the refrigerator until ready to assemble. Make ahead: The filling can be made up to a day ahead.
  3. Pour 2 inches of canola oil in a large, heavy-bottomed pot. Heat the oil until a deep-fry thermometer reads 325°. Meanwhile, divide the dough in half. Working with one piece at time, use a pasta machine or a floured rolling pin to roll the dough out until it is very thin (about 1/16 inch thick). Cut the dough in half to work in small batches.
  4. Using a 4-inch round cookie cutter, cut out 16 rounds, placing the rounds on a floured parchment-lined sheet tray as you go. Pierce the rounds all over on both sides using a fork. Wrap each round over the metal cannoli dowels. Use a little water on the edge of each round to seal the dough shut.
  5. Using a slotted spoon, lower 4 dough-wrapped dowels and fry until golden brown and crisp, about 2 to 3 minutes. Remove the dowels and allow to cool on a paper towel-lined plate. When the dowels are still slightly warm but not hot, gently remove the shells from the dowels using a kitchen towel. Repeat with remaining dough rounds. Make ahead: Cannoli shells can be made a day ahead and stored in an airtight container at room temperature.
  6. To assemble, just before serving, use a pastry bag or plastic bag with one corner snipped off to pipe the filling into the cannoli shells. Dip the ends of the cannoli into the chopped pistachios to garnish and serve immediately.
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