We’re coming off of a very good weekend. My parents came into town to visit, in part so my mom and I could do The Color Run in the Twin Cities on Sunday. We enjoyed the gorgeous weather, ate lots of yummy food (like these cannoli cupcakes!) and got some yard work done around the house like responsible adults.
Then yesterday, I found a giant bug in my coffee. And the little one woke up with a fever. So I had to postpone taking care of the laundry that is currently covering my entire bedroom floor, send the husband out to get groceries for the week (which is always a task done correctly on a wing and a prayer) and prepare for a full day of snuggles and Daniel Tiger’s Neighborhood. Thankfully we had a few extra cannoli cupcakes to make up for the abrupt change of course from the weekend.
This is the second recipe I’ve made from The Einkorn Cookbook by Shanna and Tim Mallon and, like the pizza, these cupcakes did not disappoint. The einkorn flour gives the cupcakes a tender crumb and light sweetness, and the chocolate-flecked ricotta filling is just like what you’d find in the center of a well-made cannoli. This is exactly a cannoli in cupcake form; go figure. And it is delicious in every way.
The most difficult part of this recipe is preparing the ricotta filling, and by “difficult” I mean that it takes some time because you have to drain the excess moisture from the ricotta overnight, and that means you need some patience before you can devour these cupcakes. I don’t have much patience when it comes to cupcakes. But for these, it was so worth the wait. You scoop out the centers of the cupcakes so the ricotta mixture acts as both a filling and a frosting, and so for those of us who are picky about our cake to frosting ratios, these cupcakes are a perfect 50/50. And the chopped dark chocolate and pistachios on top offer that perfect bit of crunch and saltiness.
Creamy, yet crunchy. Sweet, and a little salty. These cupcakes are just like this rough beginning to the week after a relaxing weekend, but hey! At least, no matter what, we have cupcakes.
- 1½ cups coconut sugar, processed to a powder in food processor*
- ½ cup (1 stick) unsalted butter, softened
- ½ cup olive oil
- 4 eggs
- 2 teaspoons vanilla
- 2¾ cups all-purpose einkorn flour
- 1 tablespoon baking powder
- 1 teaspoon sea salt
- 1¼ cup milk
- ½ cup plain full-fat yogurt
- ¼ cup water
- 32 ounces whole milk ricotta cheese
- 1½ cups coconut sugar, processed to a powder in food processor
- ½ teaspoon cinnamon
- 1 teaspoon vanilla
- 2 ounces dark chocolate, finely chopped, divided
- Zest of 1 lemon
- Chopped pistachios, for topping
- Heat oven to 350 degrees F. Line 24 muffin cups with paper baking liners.
- In large bowl with electric hand mixer or in bowl of stand mixer, beat powdered coconut sugar, butter and olive oil 1 to 2 minutes until creamy and smooth. Beat in eggs, one at a time, then add vanilla. In separate medium bowl, whisk flour, baking powder and salt to combine. In small bowl, whisk milk, yogurt and water to combine.
- To butter-sugar mixture add flour mixture and milk mixture alternately, mixing after each addition until just combined. Divide batter evenly among prepared muffin cups.
- Bake 25 to 35 minutes until toothpick inserted in center comes out clean. As quickly as possible, transfer cupcakes to cooling rack to cool completely and prevent cakes from falling (though they may sink the middles anyway, and that's OK. You'll frost them later and won't even notice).
- To make filling, line strainer with cheesecloth. Place ricotta in strainer over large bowl. Cover with plastic wrap and kitchen towel. Weigh down with heavy object (such as another smaller, heavy ceramic bowl) and drain in refrigerator 8 hours or overnight.
- The next day, in large bowl with electric hand mixer or in bowl of stand mixer, beat ricotta until smooth and creamy. Stir in powdered coconut sugar, cinnamon and vanilla, then beat in until smooth. Stir in lemon zest. Fold in 1½ ounces chopped chocolate (reserve remainder for topping).
- Scoop or cut out centers of cupcakes (eat scraps or save them for another use). Fill and frost cupcakes with ricotta mixture. Sprinkle tops with remaining chopped chocolate and chopped pistachios. Store in refrigerator up to 1 day.
- *NOTE: To process sugar to a powder, simply place the sugar in the food processor work bowl and process on high about 1 to 2 minutes until the sugar is very fine and powdery. Unfrosted/unfilled and fully cooled cupcakes can be frozen, but thaw them a day before frosting and serving.
Disclosure: I received einkorn flour from einkorn.com for sampling purposes. All opinions are my own.