The last time I had a cannoli was from a little bakery in Chicago. It was called Palermo, a bit out of the way from downtown but turned out to be so worth it. Not familiar with the neighborhood, it seemed a bit sketchy and out of the way. We all seemed to be thinking 'Dad, where are you taking us?' But once we went inside, it was magical. The display case was filled with beautiful cannoli, fruit tarts and many other small confections. Everything looked so amazing and it took me about a good 5 minutes of staring at it all before I could choose my two snacks for the road. We all picked out probably two each, so with four of us we figured the bill might be a bit hefty, guessing they were 3 or 4 dollars each. But when we got the bill it was something absurdly low like 8 or 9 dollars. And everything was so amazing tasting. The cannoli I got was perfection and I have been thinking about it ever since.
So when I saw this recipe for a Cannoli Cheesecake, I knew that it would be my new mission. I wanted to recreate that flavor and texture. And this cheesecake met my high expectations. The ricotta cheese, orange zest and mini chips in the filling help to make this cheese cake like a giant cannoli. Two amazing foods, cheesecake and cannoli, mixed together? How could this get any better.
I made this as a belated celebration cake for my mom's birthday! Only a few days late, damn work. It was worth the wait. So that is why the flower photos are combined with this post, they were form my dad to her. So, Happy Birthday Mom!
8 oz vanilla wafers finely crushed
3 tbsp (42g) sugar
7 tbsp (99g) butter melted
24 oz (675g) cream cheese softened
1 cup (250g) ricotta
2 tbsp flour
pinch of salt
1 1/4 cups (250g) sugar
1/3 cup mini chocolate chips
2 tbsp orange zest
1 tbsp vanilla
powdered sugar for dusting
Oven 375F. 9 inch springform pan.
Stir wafers, sugar and butter together. Press into bottom of pan and up the sides. Bake for 10 minutes until slightly darkened. Cool completely.
Beat cream cheese, ricotta, flour and salt for 5 minutes until light and fluffy. Add sugar and beat until smooth. Add in eggs one at a time. Then mix in chips, zest and vanilla. Stir until just combined. Pour into crust and bake for 1 hour. Center will still be wobbly, but sides should be set. Cool completely then wrap in plastic and chill for 8 hours. Serve with a dusting of powdered sugar.