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CANNOLI (CREAM FILLED PASTRY)
3 c. sifted flour 3 tbsp. melted butter 1/8 tsp. salt 1 tbsp. sugar 3/4 c. red wine (approximately) 1 egg yolk, slightly beaten Fat for deep frying
Mix flour, butter, sugar and salt. Add enough wine to make a stiff but manageable dough. Knead for about 15 minutes, until dough is smooth and soft. Add a bit more flour if necessary to prevent sticking. Roll into a ball, cover, and place in the refrigerator for 1 hour. Divide dough into 2 parts and roll into paper thin sheets on a lightly floured board. Cut into 4 inch circles or squares. Place a cannoli tube from corner to corner, diagonally across the square. Fold the opposite corners together around the tube. Brush corners with beaten egg yolk to seal and press together. Heat 3 inches of fat to 390 degrees F. Fry cannoli, 2 or 3 at a time, turning if necessary, until deep, golden brown. Remove with tongs or a slotted spatula and drain on absorbent paper. Cool to touch and remove tubes, being careful not to break the shells. Cool completely before filling. Fill shells just before serving so that they are crisp. If you do not intend to use them immediately, store them in a cool, dry place. They will keep, unfilled, for several weeks.
3 lbs. ricotta cheese 3/4 c. confectioners' sugar 1/4 c. creme de cacao or other sweet liqueur 3 tbsp. grated bittersweet chocolate 2 tbsp. finely minced, candied orange peel 1/2 c. chopped pistachio nuts for garnish
Beat ricotta vigorously for 2 minutes. Add sugar and liqueur and continue beating for 5 minutes longer, or until smooth. Mix in chocolate and orange and store in refrigerator until ready to serve.
Use a small spoon to stuff the filling into the shells. Dip the ends in chopped pistachio nuts. If you do not wish to serve the cannoli immediately, the filling may be kept, tightly covered and refrigerated, for up to 3 days.