Ah, cannoli. How your deep-fried pastry flecked with crispy bubbles and stuffed with fluffy ricotta has stolen my heart forever. Oh, I had seen you from a distance, in pictures, of course, and admired your soft dusting of snowy icing sugar, and imagined the crunch of your pastry crumbling into the smooth creamy filling, but never did I realize just what I was missing out on. Silly of me really, considering that all things deep-fried and stuffed with cheese are delicious. That’s a given.

As you may have noticed recently, my blog posts have had a decidedly Italian twist to them which may or may not have something to do with an Italian man in my life. While I have yet to school him in South African malva poeding, koeksisters and melktert, mostly because I don’t have time, he has not-so-subtly been teaching me the art of Sicilian cooking. Probably so I can cook for him. Sneaky I tell you! Italian’s are fiercely proud of their regional specialities and Siciliy is known for, among other things, their cannoli where the pastry was invented. The first thing I learnt about this delicacy is: two cannoli, one cannolo. Get it right. The name means ‘little tube’ which not surprisingly refers to it’s shape. But, wait, it gets more complicated because different sizes have different names. Some are small and no bigger than a finger while others (like the cannoli from Palermo) are as big as a hand.