Thu 7 Feb 2019
Read other related stories: Dessert , Stove Top Smoking
Have I got a great treat for you! Featuring smoked ricotta, I’m making a pastry horn filled with the sweetness of cinnamon infused smoked ricotta with a touch of crushed almond and shredded coconut. I have an easy method of making the puff pastry horns that don’t require purchased molds and helpful hints on filling these light, golden horns of goodness.
Be sure to follow our previous tips posting on how to smoke ricotta using a DIY stove top smoker technique, and you’ll be ready for our smoked horns of ricotta goodness!
No Purchase Necessary
There’s no need to purchase horn molds as I have a very inexpensive way to make the perfect sized horns for filling. Start by purchasing a box of sugar cones and aluminum foil sheets that are precut. For each sheet of foil, cut in half. Place one cone on the ½ sheet of foil and start to roll the foil around the cone until the final edge meets the cone. Take the excess foil and push it into the top of the cone. Continue covering all the cones – most cartons will have 12 cones total.
Tasting Notes: These foil-wrapped cones can be used again and again, as long as you keep them preserved. To do that, keep the foil on the cones and place in a storage bag, with all the excess air removed from the bag. I use my cones until they either become too soft or break apart.
Wrapping the Molds
This recipe is easier when you use ready to use puff pastry sheets that are readily available in most freezer sections of the grocery store.
Start by following the thaw directions for the pastry. Using a pizza cutter, I make roughly 3/8-inch strips of pastry. Taking a foil wrapped cone, I start about ¾-inch from the pointed end and begin wrapping the mold with the pastry strip, overlapping each edge as I progress. Add a 2nd strip, overlapping the end of the first until completely covered. You do not have to cover the entire cone. Set on a sheet pan lined with parchment paper and finish covering the rest of the cones.
With all the horn molds wrapped with puff pastry strips, it’s time to ensure they get golden brown when baking. That means they need an egg wash. Taking one slightly beaten egg, brush each horn with the egg. Use the egg wash to secure any loose ends as well. Then bake according to package directions which usually is at 400° F for 12-15 minutes. I usually rotate the sheet pan half way through the baking time to ensure even color. Remove from the oven when golden brown and gently remove the foil cone from each horn. Allow to cool prior to filling.
Ready to Fill!
With the pastry horns baked and cooling, it’s time to make the filling for the horns. Start by adding powdered sugar, cream, cinnamon and cinnamon chips to the smoked ricotta. Mix well and then place the filling in a pastry bag. I prefer the disposable kind to allow for easy clean up. For the 3 pounds of ricotta I’ve smoked, I’ll need about four pastry bags of ricotta mixture. In addition, I’m going to have two options for the ends of my horns – shredded coconut and chopped almond. Be sure you refrigerate the ricotta mixture for at least 30 minutes prior to piping into the horn shells.
Tasting Notes: For the 3 pounds of smoked ricotta I used, I included ¼ cup cream, 3-1/2 tablespoons of powdered sugar, 2 tablespoons ground cinnamon, and 1/3 cup of cinnamon chips. You can use these measurements as a guide if you elect to decrease the amount of ricotta used.
Horn of Flavorful Plenty
Now comes the fun part. Assembling the pastry horns. Starting with the large opening on the horn, begin piping the ricotta mixture into the horn in a circular fashion. Allow the mixture to go just past the end of the horn. Then pipe additional ricotta into the smaller end opening. Next, dip the ends or sprinkle using a spoon with the shredded coconut or chopped almond, or both – one on each end. Then place the finished horn on a serving tray. Repeat with the other horns until all are filled. Remember, work with only one bag of the ricotta mixture at a time keeping the others refrigerated until needed. Use your imagination and think of other great ingredients to use with the smoked ricotta like peppermint extract and chocolate mint chips. This is a recipe that is highly adaptable and don’t forget, food coloring small batches of the ricotta mixture will give you a colorful serving platter of delight.
What’s your favorite filling to go with smoked ricotta? Leave us a comment to opine and subscribe to get all our postings on tips, techniques and recipes. Bringing innovation to wood fired cooking with recipes, techniques and the science behind the fire, smoke, and flavor. That’s SmokinLicious®.
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