The Ultimate Dessert On Planet Earth: The True Sicilian Cannolo - Part II
Cannoli is a tubular fried pastry shell of dough, which is filled with a scrumptious sweet filling of ricotta cheese. Anyone making cannoli with mascarpone cheese deserves the wrath of the Sicilian Vespers on their soul. Usually the ricotta is simply sweetened with sugar and blended with chocolate chips are blended. Icing sugar is always delicately sprinkled on top.
Occasionally the pastry chef will add a sprinkle of delicate rosewater, or a touch of Marsala wine. Candied citrus peel was de rigeur in the ol skool cannoli but for some reason known only to the Sicilians, that seems to have fallen out of favor on the island, although it is still common in the true Italian bakeries of the American northeastern seaboard. It is acceptable to cannoli epicurians to have a nice long slice of candied citrus peel atop one or both ends of the creamy filling. However... If your cannolo has pistachios, hazelnuts, almonds, walnuts, sprinkles, maraschino cherries, or a heap McDonalds french fries coated in garam masala and dipped in turpentine, it is not a cannolo: It is a Satanic aberration which must be burned at the stake and never consumed as it will invariably corrupt your immortal soul and sentence you to an eternity in Food Network Hades being fed deep fried Mars bars by Paula Deen while Ina Garten does a Gypsy Rose Lee striptease.
There is no way, I repeat no way that any human can properly create a cannolo dough shell from scratch unless their genetic material contains haplogroup M172 (also known as J2), which was carried onto the island around 8,000 BC by the first "Proto-Sicanian" tribes. Yes, unless you have 10,000 years of background as a Sicilian, your cannolo shell will be either as greasy as a one quid newspaper cup of fish and chips, or as flaky as most of the commenters on my CPU Lapping Hub. In the former case, you'd be better off slathering ricotta on a zitty teenager's face and then licking it off, and in the latter case you might as well just slather the creamy ricotta and chocolate filling on your new Armani suit.
Cannoli originated during the Arab occupation of Sicily, specifically at the harem of Caltanissetta. Sicilians always frowned on their compatriot women who would serve in harems and the descriptive term is still in common use as a derogatory term for Sicilian females today: "Bottana d'o Sciecco" or "The Sheik's Whore." It is very important to utilize the proper nomenclature when referring to this cylindrical delicacy. A cannolo refers to a single unit, cannoli is for plural units, and cannolis is a word that only uneducated nth generation Americans such as Amber's pet Rob Mariano would ever use.
Whether or not you are educated in the ways of cannoli, the fact remains that they may be the single most delectable dessert ever conceived by the mind of homo sapiens. Especially if you venture deep into the Sicilian valleys to the town of Dattilo where you will taste The Finest Cannoli In All Of Sicily. If you are ever lucky enough to taste a true Sicilian cannolo, you just may never want to eat anything else. Ever!
Cannoli are delectable, ambrosial, delightful, heavenly, luscious, flavorful, scrumptious, exquisite sweet, crunchy, tasty morsels of the manna you enjoy in paradise!
Yeah.... They are that good!