Friday, January 4, 2019

Italian Cream Stuffed Cannoncini (Puff Pastry Horns)

Crispy and buttery puff pastry cannoncini (horns) filled with velvety and rich custard cream
I want to start the new year with something special. Something Italian. Something that I simply looove. Something that is ... what's the right word?!?... DESSERT of course!! 
And I don't mean any random dessert but a crispy and buttery puff pastry shell exploding with rich and sinfully creamy custard. Here is all I love (and need) in a pastry: lick-your-finger delicious (seriously!), easy to make (I used frozen puff pastry to make things easier), and oh-so pretty. 
Take a look!

It goes without saying that I love custard cream. You probably have guessed it by the many recipes with cream on the blog.  Fruit and custard tart, torta della nonna, my strawberry rose tart,  cream-filled frittelle strawberry and cream bars, berry meringue cups ... and so many others that I can't even remember. 
What's not to love about vanilla flavored and dense cream, wrapped in a buttery and crispy pastry?!? Mouthwatering and comforting, especially on cold winter days. Yes, even here in Southern California we've had, strangely enough, a bit of winter showing this year! 
In today's recipe, I used frozen puff pastry. And all I did was rolling the pastry out sprinkle with a little sugar (for extra crunchiness), cut in strips and roll around the mold.  You can see in my video, how easy is to make these horns: 

Piece of cake, right?!?
Fill with the cream and don't forget to sprinkle with powdered sugar. Heavenly :)
Find this and more Italian recipes in my NEW and FIRST COOKBOOK: The Complete Italian Cookbook: Essential Regional Cooking of Italy

Available here:


YIELD: 12 cannoncini
For the custard cream (crema pasticcera):
    • 3 egg yolks
    • 3 tablespoons (30 gr) of all-purpose flour
    • 1/2 cup (100 gr) of sugar
    • 1 teaspoon of vanilla extract
    • 8 oz (235 ml) of milk
    • For the cannoncini:
    • 1 sheet of puff pastry, defrosted (about 8 oz, 225 gr) 
    • 1/4 cup (50 gr) of sugar
    • 1 egg (for egg wash)
    • powdered sugar to decorate


    Start by preparing the custard cream (crema pasticcera):
    Warm up the milk until hot (not boiling).
    In a medium sized pan, whisk the egg yolks with the sugar, vanilla extract and flour, until light and fluffy. 
    Add the milk some at a time while whisking, making sure there are no lumps.
    Place the pan over medium heat and stir continuously until it reaches a slow boil. The cream will thicken, so be careful not to let it stick to the bottom. Lower the flame and cook for a couple of more minutes, until you reach the desire thickness.
    Pour the cream in a glass bowl, cover with plastic wrap and let it cool down. Refrigerate for at least one hour. 
    For the pastry horns:
    Preheat the oven to 400°F (200°C). 
    Sprinkle some sugar on the counter and on top of the puff pastry and roll it out to a rectangle about 9 by 12 inches. 
    Cut into 12 stripes (about 1 inch thick). Easy way to do it: cut the pastry in three parts, and then each part into four strips.
    Roll each strip onto a horn mold (conical in shape). The pastry has to overlap (about half of the length).

    Place on a baking sheet lined with parchment paper with seem (end of the strip) side down.
    Beat one egg with one tablespoon of water. Brush lightly each pastry cone with the egg wash.
    Make sure you keep the egg wash away from the mold. It will make it harder to remove the pastry horn from the mold once baked.
    Bake at 400°F (200°C) for about 15-20 minutes until golden on top. 
    Let them cool down for a couple of minutes and gently remove from the mold.

    If the pastry sticks to the mold, you can press in the mold a little (to make the circumference smaller) and very gently turn it inside the pastry until it comes off.

    Before serving, fill with the cream. 
    Sprinkle with powdered sugar if you like and enjoy!

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    1. Where do you get the cone molds? Or do you make them yourself?

      1. I've got mine at Amazon. This is the link:

      2. I saw them in homegoods yesterday! Kicking myself for putting them down after seeing this!

      3. You can use sugar cones for ice cream. Wrap quick release tin foil around the cone . Cut your pastry dough in strips and wrap around tin foil wrapped sugar cones.
        I do it when I make cream horns and it works great.when baked let cool till comfortable to handle and just pipe in filling of your choice.

    2. Can I use soy milk or coconut milk instead of the dairy milk?

      1. I tried it with vanilla soy milk and it worked but it isn't my favorite flavor. I might try it again with coconut milk (canned variety) and see if I like it better.

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    4. Add the vanilla *after* the cream is heated, never during or you lose most of the vanilla flavor.

    5. Sorry to correct you, but this desert is not italian it is austrian actually. You can learn about it under the name of schaumrollen or Schillerlocken. Tge fillings are plenty and all taste excellent.

      1. Sorry to correct you but that tube pastry was simply a copy of the horn which is in fact Roman. The cornucopia or horn of plenty was often reproduced in pastry and filled with many things, and they were the first recorded to have used pastry to wrap or fill things, there is a belief that the Egyptians had a type of dipping pastry though more akin to bread, and whilst it may be popular, wikipedia is merely reciting what iy is told by those claiming - clearly history shows that pastry shaped horns existed 1000 years before even that religion was formed, and as for puff pastry, that group who moved to America unfortunately had arrived before it had made its way to holland, it originated in Spain as the type we use today, then spread to france, who had perfected it after the dutch had already made the journey.

        So it would be more likely that if the Romans has not already done so with cream as they had with all other foods with the horn shaped pastry, then next in line would be the Spanish or the french.

        I am an ex Sheraton chef and one of my specialties is the history of dishes. A little like explaining to someone who orders Eggs Benedict with bacon, does not understand that they simply ordered bacon and eggs, as that is not the dish.

        So too the Dutch may well believe they invented something that had already been around for a thousand years., and like the bacon changes the dish, so too a tube is not a horn ending that argument anyway.

      2. Really? it's a pastry not a treatise on the origins of man. lol

    6. Did you mean cool down when you said cook down
      (Pour the cream in a glass bowl, cover with plastic wrap and let it cook down).
      And if you did mean cook down what does that really mean?

      1. Thank you so much Arthur! Definitely "COOL" down. I just fixed the typo now... so all cool ;)
        Have an amazing weekend!

    7. You should slowly whisk the cream this would help you to reduce the flattering you can add the flavoring or sugar once the cream tend to thicken you are also in need to increase the speed once vanilla or sugar is incorporated into the cream says
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    8. You should slowly whisk the cream this would help you to reduce the flattering you can add the flavoring or sugar once the cream tend to thicken you are also in need to increase the speed once vanilla or sugar is incorporated into the cream says Baking Classes Near Me .

    9. I just made these, amazing!! Do I refrigerate the leftovers or can I leave them on the counter in a sealed container?

    10. This comment has been removed by the author.

    11. I will have to try making these for my sister's bridal shower. Can the shells be frozen and then filled when needed? or will the pastry get too soft when it defrosts? Thanks

      1. Hi! These can be frozen after baking. But as you said, it's possible they lose some of their crispiness after defrosting. You could bake just a few and test it out. If you store the empty shells at room temperature in a sealed container they are fine for a day or two. You could compare the two :)

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    14. can you use whipped cream instead of custard to fill cones?

      1. You can use any filling you like. Salmon mousse, cream cheese/shredded cheese mix, ham mousse, paté, whipped cream etc.

    15. Do these have to be refrigerated after cooking and will the shells get soft after refrigeration

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    17. I liked the cream custard but I only used 35gr of sugar, which was sweet enough + 260ml of milk and turned out thick enough.

    18. This comment has been removed by the author.

    19. I just ordered molds and can't wait to try this recipe

    20. I am very happy when read this blog post because blog post written in good manner and write on good topic. Thanks for sharing valuable information. I also like to share some useful links.,

    21. What an Amazing recipe with full cream. Your blog is very informative.