Sicilian Cannoli
Cannolo, meaning “little tube”, is an Italian dessert of Sicilian origins. Cannoli come from the Palermo and Messina areas and were historically prepared as a treat during Carnevale season, possibly as a fertility symbol; one legend assigns their origin to the city of Caltanissetta. They are a symbol of both Sicily and Italian pasticceria, everywhere in the world. Cannoli consist of tube-shaped shells of fried pastry dough, filled with a sweet, creamy filling usually containing ricotta. Chopped pistachios, semi-sweet chocolate pieces, and candied citrus peel or cherries are often still included, dotting the open ends of the pastries. They range in size from "cannulicchi", no bigger than a finger, to the fist-sized proportions typically found in the south of Palermo, Sicily, in Piana degli Albanesi. Cannoli have been traced to the Arabs during the Emirate of Sicily, with a possible origin for the word and recipe deriving directly from the word qanawāt. These were deep fried dough tubes filled with various sweets, which were a popular pastry across the Islamic world at the time. The cannoli sold in Italian-American bakeries today usually still contain ricotta, but mascarpone is a less common alternative. Rarely, the filling is a simple custard of sugar, milk, and cornstarch. These changes became standardized when Italians who immigrated to the United States in the early 1900s and discovered limited availability of certain ingredients.

Sicilian Cannoli

Cannolo, meaning “little tube”, is an Italian dessert of Sicilian origins. Cannoli come from the Palermo and Messina areas and were historically prepared as a treat during Carnevale season, possibly as a fertility symbol; one legend assigns their origin to the city of Caltanissetta. They are a symbol of both Sicily and Italian pasticceria, everywhere in the world. Cannoli consist of tube-shaped shells of fried pastry dough, filled with a sweet, creamy filling usually containing ricotta. Chopped pistachios, semi-sweet chocolate pieces, and candied citrus peel or cherries are often still included, dotting the open ends of the pastries. They range in size from "cannulicchi", no bigger than a finger, to the fist-sized proportions typically found in the south of Palermo, Sicily, in Piana degli Albanesi. Cannoli have been traced to the Arabs during the Emirate of Sicily, with a possible origin for the word and recipe deriving directly from the word qanawāt. These were deep fried dough tubes filled with various sweets, which were a popular pastry across the Islamic world at the time. The cannoli sold in Italian-American bakeries today usually still contain ricotta, but mascarpone is a less common alternative. Rarely, the filling is a simple custard of sugar, milk, and cornstarch. These changes became standardized when Italians who immigrated to the United States in the early 1900s and discovered limited availability of certain ingredients.
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