Experience New Jersey with this tasty twist on an Italian classic (and New Jersey favorite). These cannoli cookies are a delicious take on the Italian pastry – without having to fry anything!
No matter how you look at it, a lot challenging things are happening in America. I’ve been trying to keep things upbeat and focused on all things sweet. No matter your position in today’s events, we can all agree on one thing: cookies are the best and we could all do with one (or two or three) right now. That’s why Bob’s Red Mill is doing a 50 States of Cookies for the holidays. Together, Bob’s Red Mill, 49 other bloggers, and myself are each sharing a cookie recipe that represents our state and starting an all out cookie revolution!! Okay, maybe not the last part, but we are all sharing what makes each of our states special in cookie form. Imagine how cool your holiday cookie plates will look with each state represented?
If you read through the blog carefully, I subtly mention here and there that I am in New Jersey. I don’t really talk about it much, not because I am worried about safety (although I don’t take that lightly either), but because I don’t normally consider myself much of a “New Jersian” so to speak. I am so much different than most of the people I find in the state, but when I really think about it, New Jersey truly has shaped a lot of who I am, even if I don’t immediately recognize it.
A big part of it is the food. We are a state with a very large Italian American population and it shows in a lot of the popular food here. You can’t go to New Jersey without eating a cannoli. I am 99% sure that every bakery in New Jersey sells at least two types of cannoli.
Don’t tell anyone, but I am actually not that fond of traditional cannoli. I don’t know why, but I haven’t found a cannoli that I really loved. I think it is the fried pastry that I don’t like which is crazy because I normally love everything that is fried!
But saying that, cannoli cookie sandwiches are incredible. The cookie has it’s own cannoli flavor with ricotta and bits of cannoli crumbs baked in (totally optional). They sandwich traditional cannoli filling and it ends up so decadent and rich, but also so amazing you may be tempted to reach for that second cookie sandwich anyway.
For these cannoli cookies, I used my favorite flour which is an Organic Unbleached All Purpose White Flour from Bob’s Red Mill (coupon here). Their flour is not enriched with any additives which means the flour is great for high-quality, well textured cookies. It is so versatile and gives me a great base for soft, chewy cookies like in the diner-style chocolate chip cookie sandwiches, or an easy batter that completely coats and sticks to crispy chocolate chip cookies for boardwalk-style deep fried cookies.
- 2 cups Bob's Red Mill unbleached all-purpose flour
- ½ teaspoon baking soda
- ½ teaspoon salt
- ½ cup (8 tablespoons) unsalted butter, room temperature
- ¼ cup ricotta, room temperature
- 1 cup granulated sugar
- zest from one orange
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 1 large egg room temperature
- ¾ cup chocolate chips
- ½ cup cannoli shell crumbs (optional)
- 1¾ ricotta cheese
- 1 cup powdered sugar
- zest from half an orange
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- ½ teaspoon lemon juice
- 3 tablespoons mini chocolate chips, plus more for decorating
- Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. Line two baking sheets with parchment paper.
- In a small bowl, mix together the flour, baking soda, and salt together. Set aside.
- In a mixing bowl, beat together the butter, ricotta, sugar, and orange zest together until light and fluffy.
- Beat in the vanilla and egg until it is well combined - about another minute.
- Slowly add the flour and beat until just combined. Fold in the chocolate chips and cannoli crumbs, if using. Cover and chill in the refrigerator for about an hour.
- While the dough is chilling, make the filling.
- Mix together all the ingredients for the filling together until well combined. Store in the refrigerator until ready to use.
- Take out the dough and make balls of cookie dough that are about two tablespoons big.
- Bake for about 12 - 14 minutes, or until the edges are a light golden brown - the tops will not brown much.
- Remove and transfer to a wire rack to cool completely.
- When completely cool, add the filling to half the cookies, then top with the remaining half. If desired, roll the edges of the sandwiches in mini chocolate chip cookies.
I was selected for this opportunity as a member of Clever and the content and opinions expressed here are all my own.