Each year on the #bakeoffbakealong there has to be a disaster week.
Now I don’t want to speak too soon, but guys, I think this is my week. (Shudders at the memories of my bru-lake in 2015)
“Make pizza” my brain said, after a somewhat disappointing Bake Off episode involving delicious but should-have-been-a-technical cannoli, a very basic (yet they all seemed to fail) margarita, and then a bake which no-one would ever have known the name of, nor bother to make in reality as it involved so much faff. Has anyone else noticed the lack of extravagance on this year’s showstoppers? I for one am disappointed, let’s hold out for the final three episodes!
Also this week, I’m sorry Stacey, but you should have gone love. As much as Yan wasn’t very liked in my household for being irritating and quite aggressive in her approach, I did enjoy her science, and she wasn’t the worst baker by far!
So that leaves my bake – cannoli.
I’ll paint the scene for you…
We had a busy old weekend and travelled ten hours in the car between Saturday and Sunday arriving home late on Sunday evening. I then decided it would make sense to start with this week’s cider apple butter batch as it takes longer than the other things I needed to make – being a) our dinner, and b) the cannoli.
Forming up the dough pretty easily, I hit the first snag after not having any marsala (white wine has to do) and also not having a pasta machine. Having made homemade pasta in the past (of course, borrowing an original 1980’s machine from the depths of the cupboard of a middle aged friend or family member), I haven’t ever seen the need to invest in my own.
The second snag was the lack of cannoli moulds, making do with wrapping the thinly rolled (evidently not thinly enough) dough around the handle of a whisk and dipping them into the oil one at a time. As Adam rightly pointed out as he saved me from the oily stress, my first attempts were, well, terrible.
The third snag was the fact I also currently do not have a deep fat fryer, meaning the oil was on the hob, and a little erratic.
Perhaps I shouldn’t blame my rather crappy cannoli on my tools ehh?
*Perhaps* it would have been more sensible not to be trying to make cannoli at 11pm on a Sunday when I knew I had to wake up at 6?!
The things we do for the #bakeoffbakealong ehh?
The cannoli shells did steadily get better, but they aren’t something I’m proud of. The saving grace perhaps is the filling, whipping mascarpone and ricotta with a decadent pecan and almond praline, and a sharp tangy lemon curd (separately, of course!). That was the tasty bit we were looking for and combined with the sort of cannoli-stroke-cinnamon doughnut-esque tubes, they were passable. I probably would have been kicked out the tent this week tbh…
If you do want to make your own cannoli *don’t do it, don’t do it* I used this recipe, which actually I have no idea whether it is good, bad, or in my case, ugly?
Cannoli? More like Can-NOT-li if you ask me!
***FYI The cannoli may have been too thick and a bit mis-shapen, and once you’ve filled them, they do go soft very quickly, but actually, they then end up a bit like tubes of doughnut and my colleagues didn’t complain, so I may have been overreacting just a tad there***