Easy Cannoli Cones

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These cannoli cones aren’t going to be as good as the cannolis from your favorite Italian restaurant but they’re really delicious, easy to make and fill the need for a quick cannoli fix.  I combined several recipes, ideas and tips from online to make this fun dessert.

To hold the cones while coating them with chocolate and chilling them, you can cut an “x”  for the number of portions in the top of the cardboard cone box covered with foil…

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… or, my favorite, the bottom of a Styrofoam egg carton, inverted with an “x” cut for the portions.

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At first, I thought it would be nice to serve the cones in a tall flute along with the filling and garnishes in separate bowls …

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… but the cones are  too hard to remove.  I found it best to just let each person grab a cone and alternate layers of filling, chips, cherries and nuts.

EASY CANNOLI CONES

6 sugar cones (the cake type with pointed ends)
½ cup chocolate chips, melted
¼ cup heavy cream
8 oz. ricotta cheese (one cup)
¼ cup powdered sugar
¼ tsp. vanilla extract
½ cup each of mini chocolate chips, chopped pistachios and chopped candied cherries

Place a spoonful of melted chocolate into each cone, turning and swirling to coat the inside of the cone.  Spread a little bit of chocolate over the rim of the cone.  Place cones in a container and refrigerate for 20-30 minutes until set.

To make filling:
Beat heavy cream until stiff peaks form.  Beat in ricotta, powdered sugar and vanilla until smooth.  Place in a covered bowl and refrigerate until ready to serve.

The chocolate coating on the cones and the filling can be done ahead of time, but wait until ready to serve before filling the cones so they will be nice and crisp.

Fill cones with alternating layers of filling, chips, cherries and nuts.

Servings:  6 cones   

Strawberry and Amaretto Tiramisu

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I’ve seen a few recipes for Strawberry Tiramisu online but went back to my original recipe which my family loves, substituting Amaretto for the Kahlua I normally use and adding fresh strawberries.  This might be our new favorite, certainly during the strawberry season.  It’s very easy to put together, not too sweet and a good make-ahead dessert.

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STRAWBERRY AND AMARETTO TIRAMISU

One package Italian lady fingers (about 12 lady fingers – I use Alessi Biscotti Savoiardi)
¼ to 1/2 cup Amaretto (to pour over lady fingers – they should be evenly moist)
One cup of fresh strawberries, hulled and sliced
4 oz. cream cheese, softened
15 oz. light ricotta cheese
2 cups frozen whipped topping, thawed (Cool Whip)
9 fresh strawberry-halves for garnish

Place the lady fingers in a layer in bottom of 9-inch pan.  Pour Amaretto over the lady fingers.  Arrange sliced strawberries over lady fingers.  Set aside.

In a large mixer bowl, beat together the cream cheese and ricotta cheese until smooth.  Fold in whipped topping.

Spoon the cream cheese mixture over the top of the lady fingers and strawberries.  Place the strawberry halves over the top of the dessert, creating 9 servings.  Cover and refrigerate at least two hours or overnight.

To serve, cut dessert into 9 servings, including a fresh strawberry half.  Refrigerate leftovers.

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Chicken and Spinach Lasagne

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This dish was inspired by one on Allrecipes.com, but changed quite a bit.  My daughters and I enjoyed this for lunch on Sunday and were able to enjoy it again for Monday night supper.  It’s very tasty and filling, and reheats well in the microwave.

CHICKEN AND SPINACH LASAGNE

5 dry lasagne noodles

¼ cup all-purpose flour
½ tsp. salt
¾ cup cold milk
1 cup hot chicken broth
8 oz. shredded mozzarella (2 cups), divided
1/4 cup grated Parmesan cheese, divided
2 tsp. fresh basil, chopped (½ tsp. dried basil)
2 tsp. fresh oregano, chopped (½ tsp. dried oregano)
¼ tsp. ground black pepper
Dash nutmeg
2 Tblsp. dried minced onions

1 cup ricotta cheese, divided in thirds
1 cup cubed, cooked chicken breast
10 oz. package frozen chopped spinach, thawed and drained*

2 Tblsp. grated Parmesan for topping

Preheat oven to 350 degrees F
Grease a 9-inch casserole dish

*Squeeze water out of the spinach after draining so that it is as dry as possible.
Chick Las-spinach

Cook lasagne noodles in boiling, salted water for 8 to 10 minutes.  Drain and rinse with cold water.  Set aside.  Pat dry with a paper towel before adding to dish.

In a saucepan, whisk together the flour, salt and cold milk until smooth.  Add hot broth and cook over medium heat, stirring constantly, until mixture starts to bubble.  Lower heat and continue cooking for two more minutes, stirring constantly.

Chick Las-sauce

Remove from heat and add 1 cup of mozzarella, 2 Tblsp. Parmesan, basil, oregano, black pepper, nutmeg and dried onions, stirring to blend until cheese is melted.

To Assemble:

Spread 1/3 of sauce mixture in the bottom of baking dish.  Layer with 1/3 of the noodles and all of the chicken.  Using 1/3 of ricotta, place in dollops on top.

Arrange 1/3 of the noodles over the chicken and layer with 1/3 of the sauce mixture, all of the spinach, the remainione cup of mozzarella and 2 Tblsp. Parmesan.  Place 1/3 of ricotta in dollops on top.
Chick Las-ricotta

Arrange remaining noodles over cheese and spread remaining sauce evenly over noodles.  Add remaining 1/3 of ricotta in dollops over top and sprinkle with 2 Tblsp. Parmesan.

Chick Las-ready

Bake in preheated 350 degree F oven for 35 to 40 minutes until top is light brown.

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Let dish stand for 5-10 minutes before serving.

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6 servings. 

Basil,oregano, rosemary, lemon thyme, peppermint (and marigolds)
Basil,oregano, rosemary, lemon thyme, peppermint (and marigolds)

Blueberry Lemon Ricotta Squares

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I was rearranging things in the freezer and was surprised to find a container of blueberries from this past June – the best blueberries I’ve ever tasted.  I needed room in the freezer and I needed a Sunday dessert so I looked on the internet for something different.  This recipe is adapted from one on All Recipes.com.  It is a rather light dessert with the good flavor of the blueberries shining through.

BLUEBERRY LEMON RICOTTA SQUARES

Cake Layer

  • 3/4 cup granulated sugar
  • 1 egg
  • 1/4 cup butter, softened
  • 1 cup all-purpose flour
  • 1-1/4 tsp. baking powder
  • ¼ tsp. salt
  • 1/3 cup milk
  • ½ tsp. lemon extract
  • ½ tsp. grated lemon peel
  • 1 1/2 cups blueberries

Ricotta Layer

  • 2 eggs
  • 1/3 cup granulated sugar
  • 1/4 teaspoon lemon extract
  • 15 oz. package of ricotta cheese (approximately 1-½ cups)

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F
Grease a 9-inch square baking dish.

In the large bowl of an electric mixer, place sugar, egg and softened butter; beat for one minute.  Add flour, baking powder, salt, milk, lemon extract and lemon peel; beat for one minute at low speed and one minute on medium speed.

Pour the batter into the prepared pan, and spread evenly. Sprinkle blueberries over the batter.

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In a medium bowl, whisk 2 eggs until light and fluffy, add 1/3 cup of sugar and lemon extract  – whisk until smooth.  Add ricotta and whisk until all of the ricotta has been absorbed.

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Spoon this mixture over the blueberries and spread evenly to cover all of the berries.

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Bake @ 350 degrees F for 55 to 60 minutes until a knife inserted near the center of the pan comes out clean.

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Place on a wire rack to cool completely before cutting into squares.

9 servings 


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