Five years ago I took my husband to New York City for my sister's wedding, his first time on the east coast. He loved just about everything on the trip (I think, with the exception of traffic, maybe), with one highlight being a visit to Little Italy, in Manhattan. He had his first taste of cannoli there, and fell in love. For Christmas that year I put some cannoli forms in his stocking, with a promise to make them, which I do off and on as a special treat (cannoli were his birthday request last year, instead of a cake!).
Cannoli are tube-shaped Italian cookies. The dough is made with sweet white wine and eggs, kneaded similarly to pasta, and rolled out very thin. I cut out circular shapes, roll those into ovals, and attach them to metal tubes (cannoli forms). They are then fried to form a crispy shell.
Using whole milk and a little citric acid, I make fresh ricotta cheese, that is then folded into sweetened whipped cream, organic lemon and orange zest, and dark chocolate. The pastry cream is piped into the crispy shells, sprinkled with powdered sugar, and served.
There is not a good way to store these treats. They are best eaten right away, before the shells have a chance to soften. If you find that you have too many to consume all at one sitting, be sure to refrigerate the leftovers. I like to serve cannoli with a fruit garnish, such as orange sections or fresh strawberries.