Thursday, April 28, 2011

Sfogliatelle Italian Dessert

Patrica Turo inspired me to make these wonderful Sfogliatelle Italian Pastries from her blog this Easter @ Piacere Food and Travel Without Rules.  These pastry are a bit time consuming but the taste results were fabulous, however a little more practice is needed while making these to get them right! I have to say out of the 30 I made only one was worthy enough for the pictures! I need alot more practice.. you can see from her awesome instructions and using a pasta machine, that helped get the dough thin enough to make hers perfect, please refer to her site as she has fabulous instructions, step by step...
Recipe Summary her recipe came from This recipe was taken from one of the chef’s antique cookbooks and she translated it into English.

Makes 16 large or 32 small pastries

I adapted parts of the recipes to my taste, I made the dough using  her dough recipe:

8 cups all-purpose flour, sifted
2 cups butter, original recipe calls for suet or lard
1 3/4 cups cold water, more if needed
2 tablespoons fine salt
1/2 cup honey

Dough Instructions:
Melt the honey with water.
Put the flour into a food processor and add the shortening, salt and mix until it crumbles. Add the honey/water mixture a little at a time until the dough forms into a ball. Knead the dough until it is smooth and elastic. Wrap and refrigerate for 2 hours.

3 cups whole milk
Pinch of salt
6 oz or 3/4 cup semolina flour
6 oz whole milk ricotta, drained very well
12 oz (about 1 1/2 cups superfine sugar
1 drop Cinnamon oil
1 tablespoon Orange Flower Water or 1 tablespoon zest
2 tablespoons Candied Orange Peel cut into small pieces ( I opted not to use peel or citron)
2 tablespoons Candied Diced Citron
3 extra large eggs


In a heavy duty saucepan bring the milk to a boil being careful not to scorch it. Add the salt and pour all the semolina at once in into the water while stirring it rapidly with a wooden spoon.
Cook the semolina for 10 minutes then remove it to cool for an hour.
Using a wooden spoon mix the ricotta, sugar, oil of cinnamon, orange flower water, if using add candied orange peel, candied citron and eggs all together in a glass  bowl. When the semolina is cool add it to the ricotta cheese mixture and mix smooth.

Preheat your oven to 375

Take out your dough and cut it into 4  equal size pieces.

Using (a pasta machine if you have one) make each piece of dough into a very thin long layer 6 inches wide and 18 inches long as thin as you can get it. Or roll by hand as I did getting it as thin as possible.
Place a sheet of the thin dough on top of a parchment paper tray on a large hard surface like a huge cutting board or pasta board. Brush the sheeted dough with the melted butter or lard coating it completely.
Place another piece of sheeted dough on top of the one you just brushed with butter and repeat. Do this until all the dough is layered and sheeted.
Trim the pastry now so it is a long rectangle. Starting from the small 6 inch end tightly roll the stack of pastry into a tight single roll its edges should look like a rolled up like a newpaper roll. It is important to refrigerate the pastry now wrapped in a cotton dishtowel (to absorb moisture ) for at least 4 hours.
Take out your chilled pastry and slice a 1/2 inch slice this will looks ribbon. Now lift up the circle and place it in the palm of your hand. Using your finger press into the center and begin pushing the layers out as if you were creating a hollow" A" frame house, and fanning until you have a layered cone effect.
After you make this pastry cup hold the shell in the center of your hand, put a spoon full of filling inside the center, sealing the edges, but don’t pinch them together. Carefully lay them down on your parchment lined baking sheet. Brush each one with an egg wash or melted butter, suet or lard whatever you choose to use. Bake @375 degrees for 15 minutes until light and golden in color.

Egg Wash
1 egg, beaten with the water
1 tablespoons water
Patricia's instructions worked very well, you will have to practice to get the right shape..

Sprinkle them with powdered sugar when they are hot out of the oven, and serve them warm if possible.

Yes, my one loan soldier that stands proud!
 Thanks Patrica, thanks to your inspiration, I was able to have these wonderful pastries for our holiday!
They were not easy and nowhere as beautiful as hers, but they tasted great and I will make these again... I appreciate your step by step instructions and pictures presented  and though I used some of our regions preferences these were made with your guidance in mind~ thanks so much~ please visit her site to see  her  creative molding and picture  instructions....
Also check out this video for more instructions see Youtube video

I had to sneak in another picture here my boy fonzo just watching me take pictures outside to capture my loan soldier... he was to cute not to mention!
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