I was in San Franciso years ago and had the most wonderful chocolate cannoli at a tiny little Italian restaurant near the bay. Creamy ricotta, rich chocolate, crunchy pistacios, and sweet raspberries…the different textures and flavors made this particular dessert quite memorable.
One of the things I love to do is to recreate dishes at home – sugar-free & gluten-free, of course – or take the flavors and put them in something else all togheter. This is exactly what I did here.
I used the same chocolate cupcake recipe as I did for my Cupcakes that Say Chocolate with Mascaropne Frosting. The frosting for these is incredibly light and just sweet enough so you can still taste the ricotta with a raspberry tang. I hope you like these as much as I do. (Joe loves them, too. He ate them two nights in a row…that means they’re off the charts good.)
A few simple tips when making these delicious cupcakes:
- Make the ricotta filling before you make the cupcake batter so you don’t leave the batter sitting around.
- The cupcakes need to cool completely before you frost them. This is true with any cake.
- Eggs cream better at room temperature. I often forget to sit my eggs out ahead of time. I put them in a bowl of warm water for 10 minutes or so to take the chill off.
- Use an ice cream scoop with a release button to put the batter into the muffin tin. This is a great no-mess method and yields professional looking results.
- When putting the ricotta in the middle of the cupcakes, use a tablespoon and a thin rubber spatuala. I push the tablespoon that’s holding the ricotta filling sighltly into the batter and then scrape it out with the spatula.
- Oil your cupcake pan well! For these, I use a pastry brush and some neutral flavored oil, like grapeseed, and even brush oil on the top of the pan so the cupcakes release easily. (I didn’t use cupcake papers for these but you can if you’d like. Spray them lightly with cooking spray so the gluten-free batter doesn’t stick.)
- When making the frosting, first stir 1/4 of the whipped cream into the ricotta mixture to lighten it up so it doesn’t deflate the whipped cream when you fold it in. Resist the temptation to stir instead of fold. You’ll end up with light-as-a-cloud frosting.
What do you like to create in your kitchen?
If you haven’t gotten your chocolate fix from my cupcakes, you might want to swing by and try:
- Heather’s Chocolate Creme Brulee at Celiac Family
- Alta’s Chocolate Chip Meringues at Tasty Eats at Home
- Ann Marie’s Chocolate Banana Coconut Milk Ice Cream at Cheeseslave
And, it’s Friday…lots of fun blog carnivals – stop by and see more great food here:
- Food on Friday at Ann Kroeker’s
- Amy’s Finer Things Friday
- Foodie Friday at Designs by Gollum
- The Grocery Cart Challenge Recipe Swap
Update 10/13/09: This post is linked to Cupcake Tuesday at Hoosier Homemade.
On another note….Thank You!!
I want to thank everyone who commented on Tuesday’s post about my finalist status in Build A Better Burger and the contest being aired on Food Network. I teared up reading all of them and it feels incredible to have so much support.
I am honored that you read my blog and take the time to share with me. You bring more joy to my life than I could ever express in words. Please know that I blog to help others, and if there is something you’d like to see here just ask. I love requests and would be more than happy to help you if I can.
I’m sending a big ol’ virtural hug out to all of you!
And, Slightly Indulgent Mondays is coming up!
Make sure to come back on Monday and link a Slightly Indulgent recipe. You’ll have a change to win a kitchen gadget and be featured the following week.
Serves: Makes & frosts 12 standard-size cupcakes
- 1 cup ricotta cheese
- 1 extra large egg, at room temperature
- ½ teaspoon salt
- ½ teaspoon good vanilla extract
- 2 tablespoon raw agave nectar
- ¼ cup pistachios, roughly chopped
- 1 ounce unsweetened chocolate
- 1 ½ cups All-Purpose gluten-free baking mix
- ⅓ cup dutch-processed cocoa
- 1 teaspoon baking soda
- ½ teaspoon baking powder
- ¼ teaspoon salt
- 2 extra large eggs, at room temperature
- ¾ cup raw agave nectar
- 3 tablespoons oil
- ½ cup buttermilk
- ½ cup warm water
- 1 teaspoon vanilla
- 1 teaspoon instant coffee
- ½ cup whole ricotta cheese
- 3 tablespoons raw agave nectar
- ⅔ cup fresh raspberries
- 1 cup heavy whipping cream
- 12 raspberries for garnish
- Preheat oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit. Prepare a standard cupcake tin by greasing or using cupcake papers.
- Put ricotta, egg, salt, vanilla, and agave in a small mixing bowl and beat on medium speed until very smooth, about 2 minutes. Stir in chopped pistacios and set mixture aside.
- Melt chocolate over a double boiler with water simmering. Once melted remove from heat and set aside.
- Combine gluten-free baking mix, dutch-processed cocoa, baking powder, baking soda, and salt. Sift and set aside.
- Beat eggs with an electric mixer on medium high speed until light and fluffy, about 2 minutes. Add agave and continue to mix until combined. Add oil, buttermilk, water, vanilla, and instant coffee, mixing until thoroughly incorporated.
- Add dry ingredients, reducing speed to medium-low and continue to mix. When almost smooth, add melted chocolate and incorporate thoroughly.
- Put ¼ c. batter into each cupcake tin. Place a heaping tablespoon of cannoli ricotta filling into the middle of each cupcake.
- Bake for 30 – 35 minutes, until a cake tester tests clean and ricotta filling as browned slightly. Insert the tester next to the ricotta mixture, not in the ricotta. Remove from oven and let them cool for 5 minutes and then immediately remove and leave on wire racks to cool completely.
- Put ricotta and agave in a bowl and beat on medium speed until light and smooth, 2 – 3 minutes. (You can use the paddle attachment for a stand mixer if you have one.) Meanwhile, put raspberries in food processor and process until smooth. Place processed raspberries in a fine mesh sieve and press raspberry juice into ricotta mixture. Discard seeds. Mix well on medium speed until thoroughly incorporated.
- Put heavy cream in a bowl and whip until it reaches stiff peaks. Take one-fourth of the whipped cream and stir it into the raspberry mixture until thoroughly combined. Fold remaining whipped cream into raspberry mix until totally combined.
- Use a small, offset spatula to spread frosting on cooled cupcakes. Garnish each cupcake with a raspberry.