Recipe by popperdoogles
"I searched high and low for a recipe for this delicious pastry, originally prepared only for the aristocratic Renaissance set in Italy. There are only a few recipes online in English, and they assume you know quite about bit about baking or were just wrong. I've tried to simplify the process. It's a challenging recipe that requires a lot of time and some special techniques. Don't be upset if you don't get it right the first time. NOTE: The dough is a formula, so the ingredient measures are weights. It matters. The rest is less critical, so I used volumes."
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12 1/3 ounces
5 1/3 ounces
6 1/2 fluid ounces
water, or more if needed
2/3 fluid ounce
1 2/3 cups
whole-milk ricotta cheese
large egg yolks
finely chopped candied orange peel
unsalted butter, room temperature
lard, room temperature
confectioners' sugar for dusting
A couple of notes: I love how allrecipes cleaned up my recipe! They changed a couple of minor things, though, which I understand.
Steps 5 and 6 in the directions are a little different that I would do it too, thought it might work as described. However you do it, always keep the dough covered when not working it to keep it from drying. A very light dusting of flour (I just brush the sheets with a flour-covered hand) will keep the sheets from sticking to each other) The way I make the dough roll is just to roll all the dough through the machine til very thin, then one at a time, stretch the dough from one end, brushing with fat and rolling until I get to the end, then start the next piece, overlapping them just enough to keep the sheets together. This way, the dough doesn't dry out. Either way, you should be able to stretch the dough to at least twice the width it was as a sheet after its last trip through the pasta machine.
I can buy sfogliatelle ricce from the Italian bakeries where I live, which are made like this recipe. I have to admit that I am not a fan of the baked ricotta filling after having tasted the American version of the sfogliatelle, the lobster tail at Mike's Pastry in Boston. I have searched high and low and cannot find a lobster tail locally, so I resorted to making my own and used this recipe for the dough. The difference between the traditional sfogliatelle ricce and the lobster tail is that the lobster tails are not filled and baked with the ricotta filling, but are instead filled and baked with pate a choux (eclair paste)in order to expand and elongate their shape, which will resemble a lobster's tail. Then, after they cool, they are injected with a creamy filling that is basically diplomat cream (pastry cream mixed with whipped cream).
I can vouch for the quality of the dough in this recipe, but I did not use the ricotta filling, so I cannot comment on that. I definitely had to add more water, even more than the recommended 2 teaspoons to get the correct consistency. After forming the shells, I filled them with choux paste and baked at 425 F for 10 minutes and at 375 for 10 more minutes. The choux paste forms a hollow cavity that can be filled with anything you desire. I do recommend the diplomat cream, but would try others in the future, such as sweetened mascarpone and whipped cream with chocolate and cherries; a chocolate diplomat cream; or a hazelnut cream.
YEAH! This is exactly the kind of complicated, multi-step, can't-find-locally kind of recipe I totally geek out on. First off, this was really fun to make. When I sliced into the dough log after it chilled, I exclaimed, "COOL!" because it looked like a big fat leek, with all the dough layers visible. I used homemade candied orange peel--with a recipe this fancy, why go halfway? I also don't think I stretched the dough enough after rolling it through the pasta machine. Oh: and rather than rolling the dough immediately after mixing it in the Kitchenaid, I wrapped it in plastic and let it sit on the counter while I made the filling. I did use the extra 2 teaspoons of water and the dough was still very tight; I wanted to give the flour time to absorb the moisture. When I did roll it out, it had a lovely, plastic texture. Like I said, my dough wasn't thin enough because the pastries were very, very crunchy--like the edge of the lasagna noodle that sticks up and gets dried out during baking. It wasn't unpleasant--but I wanted it to be thinner, more tender, like phyllo or strudel pastry. While I should probably just make the recipe again and see what happens, I also think I'd like to try adding just an ounce of fat to the dough to make it more extensible and tender. I didn't use all of the butter-lard mixture, and I some filling left over, which I froze and plan to use in breakfast pastries or for a yeasted coffeecake or something. Thanks for this great-tasting project!
* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2,000 calorie diet.
Serving Size: 1/16 of a recipe
Servings Per Recipe: 16
Amount Per Serving
Calories from Fat: 138
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