To die for: Homemade Cannoli

Homemade Cannoli

Shell Ingredients:
•4 cups all-purpose flour
•2 tbsp brown sugar
•1/4 tsp of salt
•3 tbsp of softened butter
•2 egg yolks
•1/2 tsp of nutmeg
•2 tsp cinnamon
•3/4 cup sweet Marsala wine
•shortening, for frying

Filling Ingredients:
•4 cups whole milk ricotta cheese
•1 1/2 cups powdered sugar
•1 tablespoon vanilla extract
•1/3 cup finely chopped maraschino cherry
•1/4 cup semisweet mini chocolate chips

For Garnish:
•powdered sugar, maraschino cherries and/or chocolate chips, if desired


1. Mix all "shell ingredients" except for the Marsala in a bowl with a pastry cutter until it is crumbly. The butter and egg yolks should be thoroughly mixed.
2. Next, add in the wine 1 oz at a time, until you are able to mix it with your hands.
3. Form mixture into a ball and let sit uncovered for about 30 minutes.
4. If you don't have metal cannoli tubes, create your own while you wait for the dough to be ready. For each tube you make, you'll need a 12x12 inch sheet of aluminum foil. Fold the sheet in half, then wrap it tightly around a dowel that's about 1 1/4 inches in diameter. Allow the foil to overlap on the dowel about 3 times to strengthen it. Then slide it off the dowel to make a few more. That's it!
5. Once dough is ready, roll it out so it's almost paper thin, on a well-floured surface. Then, using the rim of a margarita glass (about 3-4 inches across), make circle imprints into rolled dough. With a paring knife, make sure circles are cut all the way through.
6. Roll each circle of dough around a cannoli tube, overlaping the ends and pressing to seal, flaring out the edges slightly.
7. Fry one or two at a time in hot melted shortening (about 360°F) for approximately 1 minute, turning to brown all sides. Remove from hot grease and drain on paper towels, seam side down. Let cool a minute or two before trying to remove metal tube.
8. To remove the metal tube, hold cannoli shell down on the paper towel and carefully slide the tube out one end. Leave cannoil shells on paper towel, seam side down to cool completely.
9. Next, make the filling! Combine ricotta cheese, powdered sugar, and vanilla extract. Before adding in Maraschino cherries, squeeze them with paper towels to remove all liquid. Otherwise your filling will turn pink and watery! When ready, add cherries and chocolate chips to the mixture-- be sure not to over mix.
10. Allow filling to chill for 30 minutes. Then pipe into cooled cannoli shells. Garnish with powdered sugar, chocolate chips and/or Maraschino cherries to your taste. Refrigerate until ready to serve.
11. Buon appetito!


Ready in 25 minutes – serves 4
Penne Arrabbiata is quick and easy, yet so delicious! The beauty of this dish is that it’s very simple to add any other ingredients, such as bacon pieces, pepperoni slices or chopped onions, to make it your own special dish – or range of dishes – and of course, you can add more chilli to suit your personal tastes.
Ingredients for a meal for 4:
400g Cook Italian Penne Pasta
3 tablespoons Cook Italian Olive Oil
2 cloves garlic, crushed
1/2 teaspoon chilli powder or chilli flakes, or 2 deseeded, chopped fresh chillis
1 can or carton Cook Italian Chopped Tomatoes
1 large handful fresh basil or a teaspoon of dried basil
A good tablespoon Cook Italian Grated Italian Hard Cheese
Cook the Penne pasta in a large pan of boiling water, adding a pinch of salt, for 11 – 13 minutes.
While the pasta is cooking, make the sauce:
Warm the Olive Oil in a pan on a medium heat and add the crushed garlic and cook, stirring, for about a minute, until it is softened but not burnt.
Add the chilli and cook for a further minute, stirring occasionally.
Add the Chopped Tomatoes, and if you are using dried basil, add that now too. Then when it’s bubbling gently, cover and cook for about 10 minutes.
Now check the pasta… when it’s how you like it - ‘al dente’, or slightly softer, drain the pasta.
Add the cooked, drained Penne, and the fresh basil if using, to the pan with the sauce, and stir them together so that the pasta is thoroughly coated in the sauce.
Sprinkle with Cook Italian Grated Italian Hard Cheese for the truly Italian touch.
Serve immediately, and enjoy the results - and the praise!

Recipe to die for: Tangy tomato tango

·         120 gm pasta sheet
·         25 ml olive oil
·         50 gm tomato, roasted
·         50 gm asparagus
·         50 gm white onion
·         2 gm salt and pepper
·         60 ml pomodoro sauce
·         5 gm basil
·         10 gm garlic
·         10 gm parmesan cheese
·         2 gm parsley
·         2 gm rocket leaves

·         Take a pasta sheet and cut it into small triangle. Roll it to make a tube-shaped garganelli pasta.
·         Blanch it al dente and cool it in ice water. Drain it and mix with olive oil.
·         Heat the olive oil in the pan. Add some roasted garlic, white onions and cook till it becomes tender.
·         Add pomodoro sauce, fresh basil and the seasoning and add the pasta and the roasted tomato in the sauce. Toss properly so that the pasta is evenly mixed with the sauce.
·         Garnish with some rocket and parsley leaves and add some parmesan cheese and serve it hot