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Archive for June 24, 2011

RECIPE: Make A Creamy Cannoli Pie

Like cannolis? You can enjoy the same creamy ricotta filling and chocolate chips—baked into a pie. Enjoy this recipe, courtesy Eagle Brand condensed milk. If you want to add the crunch of a cannoli shell, add pieces of sugar cones to the pie filling.


  • 1 nine-inch unbaked pie shell at room temperature (we prefer a chocolate shell or a graham cracker shell to a plain pastry shell)
  • Water
  • Cinnamon sugar (blend 2 tablespoons cinnamon with 2 tablespoons sugar)
  • 1 container (15 ounces) ricotta cheese
  • 1 can (14 ounces) Eagle Brand Sweetened Condensed Milk
  • 1/3 cup powdered (confectioners’) sugar
  • 1/4 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
  • 1-1/2 cups semisweet chocolate chips

    Cannoli pie: a baked variation of the popular
    filled cannoli shell. Photo courtesy Eagle Brand.


  • Optional: 2 sugar cones, broken into half-inch to one-inch pieces
  • Optional: whipped cream for garnish
  • Optional: extra chocolate chips to garnish whipped cream
    1. Preheat oven to 350°F. Brush pie shell very lightly with water; generously sprinkle with cinnamon sugar.
    2. Blend ricotta cheese, sweetened condensed milk, powdered sugar and vanilla in a medium bowl. Stir in chocolate chips. Pour into pie crust.
    3. Bake 45 to 50 minutes or until [plain pastry] crust is golden brown. Filling will appear slightly soft.
    4. Cool completely on wire rack. Chill at least 2 hours before serving. Garnish with whipped cream.

    A Sicilian pastry, cannoli is actually the plural form of the word. The singular is cannolo (cannolu in Sicilian dialect), meaning “little tube.” The crunchy, fried pastry dough tube (sometimes dipped in chocolate) is filled with a sweetened ricotta cream (sometimes mascarpone), which can be mixed with vanilla, chocolate chips, chopped pistachio nuts, candied citron, marsala, rosewater and other flavorings. The open ends of the tube can be decorated with mini chips, shaved chocolate or chopped pistachio nuts. Cannoli range in size from finger-sized “cannulicchi” (mini-cannoli) to five-inch-long tubes.

  • Peruse our Pastry Glossary: a beautifully illustrated description of the different pie and pastry types.


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    COOKING VIDEO: Portabella Mushroom Burger Recipe


    Call it a portabella or a portobello: Just put this giant mushroom on the grill and enjoy it as a meaty burger. Even carnivores will love this vegetarian burger.

    When you choose a vegetarian burger, you eliminate artery-clogging cholesterol (sure it tastes great, but it’s one of the unhealthiest things you can ingest).

    You also help save the planet. The production of meat contributes to more greenhouse gas than anything else on earth, including gasoline emissions.

    So even if a portabella burger weren’t so delicious, you earn angel points for switching between beef and portabella burgers. Consider it as a regular dish for Meatless Mondays.

    There are a few tricks to making the perfect portabella burger, including removing the gills and marinating the mushrooms. You’ll see how easy it is in this video.

  • This portabella burger recipe is topped with a chopped tomato, feta and onion salad. If you have vegan guests, hold the feta. You can substitute chopped olives, raw corn stripped from the cob, or other vegan ingredients (nothing that’s animal-derived).
  • Instead of iceberg or romaine lettuce, we prefer piquant arugula on a portabella burger.
  • Go with good nutrition in your burger bun. Look for whole wheat buns, like Rudi’s and Udi’s Gluten Free. We also buy the private label* brand from Trader Joe’s.
    *What’s a private label brand? It’s one that is made by a brand-name manufacturer—or a manufacturing company that makes nothing but private label products—and packaged under the name of the retailer. Kroger’s, Publix, Safeway, Trader Joe’s and other retail chains are not food manufacturing companies. They contract with manufacturers to place their name on the package.

    What’s the difference between a portabella and a porcini? Learn your mushroom types in our Mushroom Glossary.



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    PRODUCT: Hot-Hot-Hot Ghost Pepper Salsa

    Here’s a salsa to enjoy while listening to Donna Summer belt “Hot Stuff.”

    It’s the first salsa we’ve tried from an artisan producer that uses the world’s hottest chile pepper—the ghost chile, or bhut jolokia.

    Salsa is a billion dollar industry in America, with consumer preferences trending to hot. Lots of people think that, for food, heat can’t be beat. If you’re one of the many who like it hot-hot-hot, get some of Mrs. Renfro’s Ghost Pepper Salsa. It recently won at the 2011 Scovie Awards, the world’s leading competition for hot and spicy products.

    Ghost Pepper Salsa is the fastest growing product in the company’s 71-year history. It’s also one of Mrs. Renfro’s three best sellers, along with two other hotties: Habanero and Green (jalapeño) Salsa.

    How hot is ghost pepper?


    Hot! Hot! Hot! Hot stuff, baby! Photo by River
    Soma | THE NIBBLE


  • The ghost pepper chile, or bhut jolokia, from northeast India, has been certified by the Guinness Book of World Records as the world’s hottest chile.
  • The chile is so hot, it’s used by the Indian military in tear gas—and it’s an ingredient in pepper spray, hand grenades and smoke bombs.
    The “explosive” Mrs. Renfro’s Ghost Pepper Salsa is available at retailers nationwide, or online at The cost per 16-ounce jar is $3.25 (prices will vary by market); online sales from Mrs. Renfro’s are in four-packs.

    Try it at your own risk. Says Mrs. Renfro’s: “This Ghost Pepper Salsa is scary hot!”

  • Check out the different types of chiles in our Chile Glossary.
  • How many different types of salsa can you name?

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