January is kicking my butt.
I’m sleep-deprived, gym-deprived, friend-and-family-time-deprived, and generally life-deprived. It took some planning, brainstorming, and baking at random hours of the night, but I managed to eek out some delicious baked goods this past week and can’t wait to share them with you.
But first, the new feature!
This Week I Ate…
- Annie’s Zuppa Tuscana. This soup was easy enough for a weeknight dinner but was extremely filling and satisfying. The kick of cayenne was a perfect complement to the creamy base and the hearty kale. It looks like a thick heavy soup but it’s mainly stock and white wine based which definitely offers comfort without making you hit food coma right afterward. Loved it!
- Trader Joe’s Stuffed Pork Loin with Spinach (and some cheese.. I think feta but I don’t remember). Boy made this. Just as a side, when Boy makes dinner it’s either one of two things at all times. 1: Trader Joe’s, or 2: pasta with doctored up jarred sauce. He’s gotten pretty good at doctoring things up adding fresh veggies, herbs (we owned a basil plant for awhile until he let it die), or even white wine. This pork loin was quite delicious too. I heart Trader Joe’s.
- and a whole lot of hospital cafeteria food. Such is my life.
Ever since I came up with the resolution to create a new recipe each month I’ve been brainstorming ideas. The goal of the resolution was to start learning how to make other baked goodies besides cupcakes which, up until now, has really been the only branch of baking I’ve felt comfortable tinkering around with. So this month I didn’t set any limits on myself. I set out to find inspiration.
On my interview trail (what we call the interview season between November and January when most residency programs hold their interviews), I began to treat myself to a baked good while traveling back home. After a long day of interviewing (our days usually go from 7.30 or 8am until 2 or 3 pm), the only redeeming part of the day would be finding a nearby bakery and finding something wonderful to nosh on.
One particular interview in the Bronx brought me to Conti’s, home of a wonderful cannoli I just couldn’t turn down.
And because we’re meant to be together, literally the next day Boy and I were discussing what I could make and he suggested something to do with cannolis.
Mind you, we are not exactly an Italian, cannoli-eating couple.
So then it had to be done.
It’s not exactly a completely original recipe but the idea is all mine. Baby steps, people!
The crunchy, slightly nutty lace cookies are a perfect complement to the ricotta cannoli cream dotted with chocolate shavings. Sometimes I find cannoli shells a bit too sweet for my taste but these flavors worked really well together. For a nice dinner, you can make napoleons or for something a little more casual you can form the lace cookies into taco shapes and make little cannoli tacos!
I’m quite proud.
Lace Cookie Cannolis
a STO original of sorts
- 1/2 c all-purpose flour, sifted
- 1/2 c granulated sugar
- 1/2 tsp pumpkin pie spice
- 1/4 tsp baking powder
- pinch of salt
- 1/2 c old-fashioned oats
- 1/3 c unsalted butter, melted
- 2 tbsp heavy cream
- 2 tbsp light corn syrup
- 1 tsp vanilla extract
For cannoli cream (STO original):
- 3/4 c ricotta, full-fat preferred
- 1/2 c confectioner’s sugar, sifted
- pinch cinnamon
- 1/4 c heavy cream
- 1 oz semisweet chocolate, shaved
For cookies: Preheat oven to 375F. Line baking sheets with parchment paper.
Combine flour, sugar, pumpkin pie spice, baking powder, salt, and oats in a medium bowl. Set aside.
Using a stand or hand mixer, mix together butter, cream, corn syrup, and vanilla. Slowly add in the dry ingredients and mix.
Drop 3/4 tsp of batter onto baking sheets leaving 2 inches all around each cookie as they spread in the oven. Bake 7-9 minutes or until golden. If molding into taco shapes, balance a wooden spoon atop 2 glasses turned upside-down. Once cookies come out of the oven, while they’re still warm, carefully drape over the wooden spoon handle into a taco shape and allow to cool in that position. Otherwise, allow cookies to cool on baking sheets for about 2 minutes before transferring to a rack.
For cream: Fold together ricotta, confectioner’s sugar, and cinnamon. In a separate bowl, whip heavy cream to stiff peaks. Then fold heavy cream into ricotta mixture. Finish by folding in shaved chocolate.
For assembly: For napoleons, layer 3 same-sized cookies with 2 dollops of cannoli cream. Top with extra cream.
Is your January out of control?