New Year's Resolutions

It's New Year's Eve! Wow. That year went by fast, huh? At least it did for me. First of all, I would like to take a moment to thank everyone for reading my blog for the past year--it's bee quite the adventure and we have sure shared some laughs, great food, and hopefully you all learned as much as I have!! THANK YOU! This blog would be a bunch of cyber junk without all my awesome readers.

Secondly, we need to talk resolutions. I know some people don't make them, and that's totally cool and all, but I'm not one of those people. I like my New Year's resolutions and I generally stick to them. Two years ago, my resolution was to quit smoking and guess what? Tomorrow is my quitaversary--two years strong! Last year, I resolved to read more books, and this year [drumroll please] I read 29 books! That is a ton of books!!!!

So this year, I really had to think about my resolution would be. I have given it a lot of thought and in the end I have a few things I working on this new year.

#1- Read the classics
I read a lot of books this year and I loved accomplishing that goal. One of the first books I read last year was The Great Gatsby, and that got me thinking: I want to read the classics. Some books on that list are, Utopia, The Bridges of Madison County, The Adventures of Tom Sawyer, Animal Farm (well, I have read Animal Farm, but it's been years, so I am doing it again), The Grapes of Wrath, and The Old Man and The Sea.

#2- Invite my dad on more outings
My dad and I go out to dinner a lot. I started to wonder if thinks he always has to invite me to dinner to see me...and then I thought "that's silly--I sure hope he doesn't think that!" Really? Who cares if he does or doesn't, I should invite him to do more go to the movies, or go bowling, or something. So that is one resolution I am making for the New Year.

#3- To work extra hard this year 
Work goals...I love those ones! This next year I really want to put my nose to the grindstone and explore the world of work in ways I never have before. Hopefully 2013 can be my best year to date for work!!!

So tell me, what are your New Year's resolutions?!? Also, if you have any classic book suggestions for me, please help me out on my goal by leaving them in the comments section below!!

Happy New Year everyone--and please, be careful on the roads tonight. 

10 Things NOT To Repeat in 2013

These are not really resolutions...because those are coming on Monday. But rather, I was just thinking about things I just don't want to do again in the coming year. Reflecting is good because it allows us to confront the ways in which we can succeed...which is to nicely say, "yea I screwed that one all up and I'm gonna do it better next time around."

I've got quite a list myself, but I had to narrow it down to 10. They aren't in any particular order, but you know, people like things in list form, so here is my list of things NOT to repeat in 2013.

#10- Quit meditating
It's like, I get there a little bit and then I just quit. No quitting this year. No, this year will be the year of zen. This year, I will meditate more, even if it's hard or not perfect or whatever. I'm not gonna quit.

#9- That moment where you just go overboard, (and by that I mean I did too much nitrous.)
I left my partying days behind me a couple of years ago. But we all have our moments. Mine was when I did too much nitrous and felt like I was unable to form a sentence for two full days...unless you count "I totally, um, carrot" as a sentence. This is not an episode I can repeat again. Even if I do have a "toothache."

#8- Not washing my car 
I washed my car a total of one time in 2012 and it was last week. I have to say is pretty unacceptable especially considering I love to park my car under our holly tree where all the birds live. Sometimes I felt like I was driving a bird crap mobile. The worst part is when other people notice and then I would get all defensive. STUPID. I'm washing my car this, at least 3 times.

#7- Trying to buy jeans anywhere other than Lucky Brand Jeans. 
Total. Disaster. Not all jean companies are created for women. When you find a company that works for you (and it doesn't have to be Lucky Brand Jeans) just stick with it. Don't try to improve upon a formula that totally works. It may cause you a moment in a dressing room that derails your confidence.

#6- Playing reindeer dumb girl games 
Remember in high school when your social group of friends felt like the Coliseum and you were being thrown to the lions? History, as they say, has a way of repeating itself. I am always relearning lessons and also, how I am participating in the repetition of it all. If you find yourself in a similar situation, think about how you play into it, and ensure it won't happen again by changing the only person you have control over--yourself. And honestly, just be grateful for friends you lose.

#5- Eating myself sick 
I am almost ashamed to admit that I ate so much rich food last year, I made myself sick. It's no secret how this might have happened. I cook a ton for this blog and I feel an obligation to eat it all. It all culminated after I ate a plate of fettucine alfredo and just couldn't move. After several weeks of salad, I was able to recover my digestive system, but seriously? I'm not doing that this year. I need to eat a more well balanced diet. Period.

#4- Feeling that creep of self doubt 
Ugh. Why does it happen? It's like, I am doing great and then....there it is--self doubt. I am not sure I can totally eliminate this human quality from my life, but I am sure going to have a lot less of it this year and I think I can achieve it if I stick to #10--meditation. More self confidence is my goal!

#3- Letting my dogs totally overeat
When my doxie hurt his back in April, it took us a while to find out exactly how to help him. Number one? Get his fat little butt in shape. We were just letting our dogs dictate how much they wanted to eat, which is like asking a four year old if they would rather have oatmeal or ice cream for breakfast. Now I measure the food for all my dogs, and I feel better about it. I'm sticking to it.

#2- Buying greek frozen yogurt bars 
Worst. Idea. Ever. They were the worst frozen treat I have never enjoyed. I am so susceptible to marketing, and I have to stop buying crappy products because the packages look cool or the commercial has a great jingle. This year, I will stick to regular ice cream!

#1- Not living up to my full potential
I'm not going to lie, last year was busy and I got a lot done. But as far as living up to my full potential is concerned? I fell short. This year, I am going for it--all the way. Harder. Faster. Stronger. I'm bound and determined to make this one of my best years....ever! 

Quick Fix: Pickle Shooter

I am positively obsessed with pickles. I love making my own pickles, but I also love the pickle juice. I use the juice in my bloody mary, which really gives it a *POW* of pickled goodness, but there something even easier that I love: the pickle shooter.

Now, normally, I am a "let's take a shooter" kind of girl--but put pickle in it and I have a hard time saying no. Not only is this a great way to take a shooter, but it also answers that age-old question of "What to do with that leftover pickle juice??" Also? It's fast. And you can't beat fast, awesome, and pickle all in one drink now can you? Of course not.

I like to use a premium vodka when I am doing a pickle shooter, and in this instance I have chosen to go with Grey Goose. Crystal Skull Vodka is also good. Since I am obsessed pickle maniac, I have also used my own pickle brine, but you can use store bought, so don't worry. I like the flavor of Claussen pickles the best, but again, use whatever you like (these are not rules, merely suggestions)!

All you do for this shooter is pour equal parts vodka and pickle juice into a shaker filled with ice. For these drinks I used 4 ounces of each. Shake it up real good to chill and then..... pour!

I like to garnish mine with a little homemade pickle. 

View from the top....
And bottoms up!

It tastes like the ocean in a pickled sort of way. 


Prosciutto & Fig Ravioli Recipe

I love to make homemade ravioli around Christmastime. It just feels right to me. Not that making ravioli is ever OUT of style or anything--okay, fine, I make it all the time. The point here is, I wanted to make ravioli and I had some prosciutto ham, some figs, and mascarpone cheese. This sounded like a yummy combo to wrap in some homemade pasta, so I started searching for recipes... and found none!

Not that it didn't exist--it was showing up on restaurant websites and products for sale. Just no recipes. That could only mean one thing: I had to make up my own! So I did. The results? Yum-tastic. Yum-licious. Pasta-wonderful! So I wanted to share this with you guys. In case you find yourself with a case of "the raviolis" and you are looking for a great way to impress your taste buds.

Star with a tablespoon of olive oil, 2 cloves of garlic (minced), and half an onion, diced. 

Sautee about 5 minutes or until the onions are translucent and then take them off the heat and allow them to cool. 

Mascarpone cheese. This stuff is the bee's knees. It's cream cheese's Italian counterpart. For that reason, if you find your store doesn't carry mascarpone cheese, you can substitute cream cheese instead. 

Take your prosciutto ham and cut it up well. 

Combine with the mascarpone cheese in a medium bowl. 

Let's take a moment to talk figs. I love them. I even have a fig tree that my husband gave me for our first anniversary because those little suckers are expensive. These figs we canned ourselves, so it's like a fig preserve. You could use either fresh or canned figs in this instance--this is just what I had on hand. 

Either way? 1/3 Cup, diced up. 

Added right in. 

Shredded cheddar. I'm going to be coy about this cheese decision--because it wasn't much of a decision at all--cheddar was all I had. You could also use mozzarella or fontina or even goat cheese (which, frankly would be delicious!) 

Take the little tiny leaves off of two little sprigs of thyme. This came from my was December, no less! Crazy right?! 

1 egg, beaten. 

Remember those onions you were letting cool like a million years ago? Yep, time to add them in now.  

Add some fresh ground pepper and then give it a good stir. 

This is what it should look like. 

Now at this point, I feel it's important to say that you can walk over to the refrigerator and grab a pack of wonton wrappers to finish these ravioli off. You don't have to be a crazy kitchen maniac like me. Do not let the homemade dough deter you from making this recipe. Wonton wrappers are a perfectly acceptable substitute. If you fall into this category, please just enjoy the following pictures with a glass of wine. 

However, if you want to make your own ravioli, you totally can--it's a lot of fun! And there are lots of pictures coming to teach you how! 

You can get the pasta recipe here. For this particular ravioli recipe I used the *2 cups of flour, 2 eggs, and 2 tablespoons of olive oil (plus a little water) version of my pasta recipe. This will make about 40 ravioli with the filling recipe I have provided. 

Supplies and dough all ready and raring to go! 

You are going to want to roll your prepared pasta dough to a level 8 on your manual machine. 

The ravioli press. 
If you need a tutorial on how to use it, this should help out. I also have one HERE

Step one: make sure it's really well floured. 

Step two, place your dough on the press. 

Step Three: Press the indentation-maker device into the dough. PRESS FIRMLY. (This is what stretches the dough to fit the filling). 

Step Four: Fill! 
Be careful not to OVERFILL  because that will cause your dough to tear. 

Step five: using your finger, dipped in water, wet slightly the edges so that when you place the dough on top, it'll seal nicely. Now, I'm not going to lie, I forget to do this sometimes, and it's OK. But it's better when I don't forget. 

Step six: Place your top layer of dough on top. 

Step seven: Using your rolling pin, roll overtop of the dough. Press REALLY HARD, and go over several times if you need to. And also, make sure to get the edges really well. 
If you don't have a rolling pin, you can also use a bottle of wine. I have done that in a pinch, and it's like...oh look, a bottle of wine. We should open it. 

Step eight: and this is the hardest part. Flip the whole thing over. I know, but just do it. 

Step nine: Now take it off. 

Step ten: Using a dough scraper, make sure the ravioli is cut. 

Some you may need to re-seal using a fork. 

I use my dough scraper to transfer the ravioli to a sheet pan with cornmeal on it. I then freeze the ravioli. You don't have to freeze them, you can use them right away, but if you want to store them, freezing is THE way to go. 

Once they have frozen on the sheet pan, transfer them to a container and separate the layers with parchment paper. 

When you boil them fresh, it takes two minutes. 
When you boil them frozen, it takes about 4 minutes. Fast, any way you look at it! 

Serving suggestion:
Serve over sautéed kale with a butter sauce, white wine sauce, or even a red sauce! 

Prosciutto & Fig Ravioli Recipe

Time: 45 minutes- 1 hour (depending) | Makes 40 ravioli | Difficulty: Medium-Difficult

You Will Need: 

1 tablespoon olive oil 
1/2 onion, diced 
2 cloves garlic, minced
4 ounces mascarpone cheese (or cream cheese) 
7-8 pieces prosciutto ham, cut into small pieces
1/3 cup figs (mine were preserved, but you can use fresh) 
1/2 cup shredded cheddar cheese (or goat cheese, or mozzarella)
1 egg, beaten
fresh ground pepper

1 recipe of Billie's Perfect Pasta (2,2,2 variation *see note above)
Wonton Wrappers

Special equipment- Ravioli press, pasta machine, dough scraper (if making your own pasta) 


If you are using homemade pasta, I suggest making it before you start the filling. That way you can allow the pasta to rest while you are making the filling. 

In a skillet over medium high heat, heat the olive oil. Add the diced onion and the garlic and sauté about five minutes or until the onion is translucent. Remove from heat and allow to cool. 

In a medium bowl, add the mascarpone cheese, prosciutto ham, figs, cheese, and egg. Grind some fresh pepper into the bowl. Add in your onions, which have cooled. Mix well. Let the filling chill in the refrigerator for 1/2 hour before filling the pasta. 

If you are using wonton wrappers: 
you can do it one of two ways. If you like the traditional look of square pasta, you can lay one sheet down, place the filling on it in a couple of places (like making four smaller ravioli or two larger ravioli) and lay a sheet over top of it and then cutting it accordingly. OR you can use 1 sheet per ravioli and fold it over on itself. Either way, be sure to dip your finger in a little water and use it to "outline" your shape before marrying the dough--so it sticks. Repeat with all your wrappers until the filling runs out. You can either make them fresh or freeze them using the same method I will demonstrate with the fresh dough. 

If you are using fresh pasta:
By now you are ready to begin rolling it out with your machine. I like to do it as I go, so that I have not rolled too much dough (this, for me, is a space issue.) So when the filling is chilled, go ahead and begin rolling out your dough. I like my dough at an "8" on my pasta machine for the ravioli. 

Flour your ravioli press generously. Lay down a piece of stretched dough and place the rounded stretcher overtop of it, pressing down to create an indentation in the dough. Using a teaspoon, fill the indentations with the chilled filling. Using your finger moistened with water, "outline" the dough so that the top layer will stick. (see picture above). 

Place a second piece of stretched dough over the filling. Using a rolling pin, (or wine bottle) roll overtop of the dough, flattening it, getting the air bubbles out and sealing the top layer of dough to the bottom layer. 

Flip the press over. Use a dough scraper to cut the ravioli completely. If any need to be resealed on the ends, use a fork to press the dough together (see picture above.) 

Place the finished ravioli on a sheet pan powdered with cornmeal. 

Continue with all the pasta and filling until completed. When the sheet pan is full, either cook the pasta in boiling water for 2 minutes (or until they float) OR freeze. 

To freeze:  Place the sheet pan in the freezer and allow them to freeze individually for a couple of hours. When they are frozen, transfer the ravioli to a container, separating the layers with parchment paper. To cook: boil in water for about 4 minutes or until the raviolis float to the top. 

I'm Exhausted, Let's Talk About My Cat(s)

This is definitely his best picture to date
The Christmas holiday has come and now gone and I don't know about you, but over the last two days, I just plain ate too much. It was glorious. However, after an eat-fest of those proportions, well, I couldn't stomach (pun intended) talking about food today. So I wanted to talk about a little someone who lives with us--mainly under the bed up in the lining of the box spring--my cat, Mr. Blue. 

If you didn't know that I had a cat, it's probably because I don't talk about him on my blog. But to talk about my [awesome] cat, Mr. Blue, I feel obligated to tell the tale of his sister as well, Banana. Get cozy and all ready to hear a tale of two kitties.

Way back when (in reality just over 8 1/2 years ago) we first moved into our farmhouse, our friends used to come and live with us every summer--Emily and Eliot. The first summer they came, Emily was positively obsessed with getting a kitten. She found some in the paper, and when she said she was going Daren sent me along to pick out a kitten as well. Daren said every farmhouse needs a cat to kill mice, and well, since Emily would be taking hers back to Maryland at the end of the summer, we needed our own.
This is the "don't flash that flash in my face again" look

When we got there, these kittens were living in kitty cat squaller. It was awful. I quickly realized, though, that Emily and I had completely different ways of picking out cats. Me? I looked into that box of crusty kittens and I picked the biggest one. Emily? Well, she looked into that box and took the scrawniest most pathetic one. Armed with our new kittens we went home and named them. Her runt was Banana and my really manly awesome cat was Mr. Blue.

Finally, I caught him catnapping 
It wasn't too long until we realized that their sizes were not their only difference. Mr. Blue was more reclusive. He was his own man. Banana? She was as crazy as a loon. She was always getting into trouble by doing things like batting at pots of boiling water or sleeping in the dryer, which almost ended really badly. When we caught her playing in the toilet, well, that was doozie, but that was Banana. But when Emily left without Banana that summer, well, something had to be done.

That was when we decided the two cats should be outdoor cats. Mr. Blue? He loved it--he bear climbed up trees and was rarely seen for years. Banana, though, would not accept her fate as an outdoor cat. She was simply not made for the outdoors. She would cry at the door for hours and her meow sounded eerily like "mom." Anytime I let her in, she hid and refused to come out.

After a few years, Banana started disappearing for months at a time, and I suspected she had found what she was always looking for: an indoor family. Eventually, she stopped coming back altogether. That was when I started trying to coax Mr. Blue to come inside. Maybe it was that I felt bad...or maybe it was just that I liked Mr. Blue better....I was skeptical, of course--Banana's misbehaviors over the years made me wonder what tricks Mr. Blue might pull.

He hasn't pulled any. Well, that is, unless you consider sleeping under the bed a trick, or the occasional spooning session with my dachshund. He's house trained--he meows at the door to go out--and curls up next to me on the bed and purrs while I type away on my keyboard. Mr. Blue is a rough and tumble kind of cat who does what he wants when he wants. He's afraid of our toy train around the Christmas tree. He's a huge tomcat now and he kills a ton of mice because he's hardcore like that.

No, Mr. Blue is not a crazy Banana, though every litter likely has one... but he is my cat, and I am glad we getting on together in these ways. I enjoy his company. I like to think our relationship is mutually beneficial.

I am reminded when I am hanging with Mr. Blue, of a bumper sticker my husband once saw on a truck that contained a vast amount of metal scraps, "Happiness is loving a cat." 





However you celebrate, Bossy Italian Wife hopes you do it with love and lots of food! 


Regular posting will resume on December 26, 2012. 

My [Italian-American] Christmas Eve Menu

Happy Holidays!!! 
Christmas Eve in our family belongs to the Italian-Americans. That is, my mom and I are in charge of the big Christmas Eve dinner, which we do at her house. In case anyone was wondering what our dinner looks like, I wanted to publish my menu. You can get some inspiration and even some recipes in case you are planning one yourself or are just curious.

Where possible, I have linked up recipe from my blog, which I hope will help everyone! 


Antipasta Spread
Italian Meats (Pepperoni, salami, prosciutto)

Main Course:

Homemade Lasagna 2 ways (get the fresh pasta recipe here
One way we are making it is my Uncle David's recipe which we are calling "David's Straight Up Lasagna). The Other is a veggie lasagna with fresh spinach and artichokes. 
Spicy Italian Sausage 


Mom's [amazing] salad
Fried Cardoons & Artichoke hearts 


Chocolate Tiramisu 
Apple Pie 

Quick Fix: "Cafe Mocha"

So, generally I am a do it yourself kind of gal in the kitchen. I like making stuff from scratch--it makes me feel good. This is not one of those kinds of drinks. This drink is so fast it'll make your head spin. I actually have been thinking a lot about this drink for a couple of reasons, and I have to be honest, I almost didn't share it on here.

At first, I was worried it was too simple; like people would be thinking it was too easy. But then I thought, "can something yummy be too easy?" Turned out the answer was no. If it's good, it's good, regardless of how many minutes it took. Then there is the fact that Christmas is just four days away. I feel like this drink is great for Christmas morning when you want something a little more special than plain old coffee.

If you like hot cocoa and you like coffee, then this quick fix "cafe mocha" is for you.

I love hot chocolate by Swiss Miss. My grandfather used to drink it when I was a kid, and so it reminds me of him. The instant coffee? I bought that for a party once, and I still had some around. So I thought to myself one chilly evening, why not mix the two together? I was HOOKED after that. 

Put your cocoa mix in the cup....

And the instant coffee.... 


While you are observing you are also heating up 8 ounces of water in the microwave. Two minutes and thirty seconds should do the trick. 

Pour your how water into your cup. 

Observe again. 

Stir with a spoon. 
Sip and enjoy. 

You are the master of the easiest cafe mocha in the whirled. Hehe. Yep, I said "whirled."

Super Easy Cafe Mocha

Time: 3 minutes | Serves 1 | Difficulty: Not difficult 

You Will Need:

8 ounces of water
1 packet of cocoa mix 
1 packet of instant coffee


Heat your 8 ounces of water in the microwave for approximately two minutes and 30 seconds. 

In a mug, add the cocoa mix and instant coffee granules. 

Pour the hot water over the mixes. Stir to combine. 

Enjoy how awesomely fast, easy and delicious that was. 

Merry Christmas. 

Holiday Survival Guide

If the words "holidays," "Christmas," and/or "family time" in combination with one another have you seeing red, you should know that you not alone. A lot of people just don't like their families that much and putting all those related kooks in proximity to one another for hours during the holidays can feel like slow torture. It happens. If you find yourself dreading family get togethers this holiday season, I am here to help. Because I want you to feel as jolly as an elf on Christmas.

Here's my Bossy Italian Guide to holiday survival!!!

Don't hit the nog too hard 

Holidays seem to imply it's a time to drink...and some of us have a tendency to get carried away with it.  Hey, I am no exception. We all have our moments. But if your family is a powder keg, don't add fuel to the fire by saucing yourself. It won't end well. Keeping your head about you is always a winning combination.

Let the award for best train wreck at the holidays go to your drunk Uncle Ted.

Find your "crazy buddy" 

Unless you are the complete outlier in your family, generally you can find a "crazy buddy." You know, the person with whom you talk about things like, "Geez, Uncle Ted was soooo wasted and did you see him getting inappropriate with the Christmas tree??" THAT is a crazy buddy. And we love those, don't we?

You should seek your out and plant yourself next to them. It could be your spouse, your cousin Martha, or even the family dog. Either way, having a little company that understands what in the heck is going on is nutty is a great way to take the pressure off!

Bring a book, crossword, or just some headphones! 

When all else fails, READ. Sometimes a little time out makes things better. You don't even have to leave the room to read. You can be the port in the storm by taking a few moments to read a book, throw in your headphones and listen to your favorite playlist. When we were kids we would do that kind of stuff all the time....why did we ever stop??? You don't have to!

Have an exit plan 

This is a good one because it doesn't matter if you are staying overnight or just visiting for dinner and gifts. If you need an exit, have it prepared ahead of time. For instance, if you want to limit your stay to just a couple of hours, ask a good friend of yours to call you at a certain time. Once you've gotten off the phone, you can say something like, "Oh my friend Marcy is having a holiday meltdown, and I have got to run!" Then out the door you go!

Don't have a phone a friend on speed dial? That's okay--you can have another plan in place. So you look at your watch and say, "Oh no! Look at the time! Fred is having a Christmas party and promised to stop over." Exit solved. You can head to the bar for a break, or just drive around in circles. But if you need an exit plan, you've got one.

Cannoli Biscotti Recipe

During the holiday season, I make a lot of biscotti. This year was no exception and I started a while ago making up biscotti recipes and testing them for the impending gift giving. Because if a gift is homemade, it feels different. So I always like to give a little something that I have made.

I found this recipe to be interesting...a bit of a departure from the biscotti norm. It's a little more "cakey" than the crumbly dry coffee biscotti, but no one complained. So I've decided it's worth sharing. Because the holidays are coming, and one can never have too many recipes up one's sleeve. So print this one and tuck it into your favorite sleeve.

It's adapted from a recipe my mom tucked into our family cookbook. CLICK HERE for the original. Mine is a bit different in that it's virtually butter less. That's right BUTTER LESS. Except for right at the end. Hey, I said "virtually," not "completely." Also? I used cottage cheese in place of ricotta cheese. which is one of my favorite tricks. (Stay tuned for how I hide it.)

This is gonna hit your sweet spot-- and it's not gonna last long. So prepare yourself for some fun yummy biscotti that disappears before your very eyes!!!

Like most Italian cooking, the ingredients are relatively simple. 
Flour, cornmeal, almonds, sugar, vanilla, baking powder, cottage cheese, applesauce, some chocolate chips (I used a mix of white and milk chocolate) and some liqueur--we'll talk about that soon, I promise. 

First we are mixing the dry ingredients. Cornmeal....


Baking powder.... 

Now you are just gonna give a little whisk and set it aside. 

I have some low fat cottage cheese here. Now you can also use ricotta cheese, but I had this cottage cheese that needed to be used, and so I put it in my food processor and turned it smooooooth. It's a great substitute for the ricotta. 

Look at that--I would swear it was ricotta if I didn't know any better. (Which is what you will be saying to yourself.)

Add to it your applesauce and egg... 

And vanilla... 

And now to this liqueur. I want to tell you a little story of how I came to be in the company of this macadamia nut liqueur because it's a good one. Or a weird one. Same thing, right? 

Anyway, years ago my husband and I attended my family reunion in upstate New York. We had a question and answer and prize portion of the family reunion. I guess we answered a question right so we got to pick a present and when we unwrapped it, we had gotten macadamia nut liqueur. Go figure. 

Well since that day at the family reunion, this liqueur has been sitting on my bar. You don't have to use this particular liqueur. You can use any liqueur you won during your family reunion. Your choice. Just wanted to make that clear. 

Add your weird liqueur. 

And your sugar. 
And once that is all stirred up and combined, you are ready to tackle adding the wet ingredients to the dry ingredients. 

Yep, there it is. Adding that flour in. 

And there's a nice dough. 

Add some nuts.... and I am not talking about your family...hehe. 

And your chips... 

I mixed it with my hands. If you choose not to use your hands, it will probably take you a mighty long time to mix it. And anyway hands are the preferred mixer of Italian-Americans everywhere. At least that is what I assume because that has been my experience. 

Divide it in half. 

And place it on a sheet pan lined with parchment paper. 
The parchment paper is optional, of course, but I am an avid use of the stuff. Nothing sticks and that makes me incredibly happy. And unstuck. 

You are going to cook these suckers until they are golden brown on top, which was roughly 40 minutes. 

Then slice them up.... and bake them again, this time for about 25 minutes. 

They will look something like this. 

Okay. Remember how I said they were virtually butterless? Yes, this is the part where the butter comes in. I am only using it to get the powdered sugar to stick. SO if you have another solution to getting the powdered sugar to stick, lay it on me! Otherwise, use a small amount of butter, melted, in the microwave. 

And the powdered sugar. No measuring. Just pour some on a plate! 

Brush your biscotti with butter and then roll it in the sugar. 


The Cannoli Biscotti Express is in, and it's at your kitchen!!! 

Cannoli Biscotti Recipe 

Time: 1 1/2 hrs start to finish | Makes: 12 + biscotti | Difficulty: Medium 

You Will Need: 

2 cups of flour 
1/4 cup cornmeal 
1 teaspoon baking powder
1/4 cup applesauce
1 tablespoon liqueur (I used macadamia nut) 
1 large egg
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1/3 cup granulated sugar
1/2 cup chopped almonds
3/4 cup chocolate chips (I used white and milk chocolate) 
1/2 cup low fat cottage cheese 
small pat of butter 
confectioners sugar 


Preheat your oven to 325 degrees. Prepare a baking sheet by lining it with parchment paper. Set aside. 

In a small mixing bowl, add your flour, cornmeal, and baking powder. Set aside. 

Add your cottage cheese to a food processor and blend until smooth. In a medium mixing bowl, add your applesauce, egg, vanilla extract, liqueur, and processed cottage cheese, and sugar and mix to combine fully. 

Begin adding the dry ingredients (flour, cornmeal and baking powder) to your wet ingredients (egg, sugar, etc.) and mix until they are fully blended into a dough. 

To your dough add the chocolate chips and almonds and mix evenly (with your hands is the best way to accomplish this). 

Cut your dough into two even portions and pat each into a "loaf"-- see picture above if you need a little guide on that. Place your portions of dough on your prepared baking sheets and put them in the oven to bake for about 40 minutes or until golden. 

Remove them from the oven and allow to cool about 10 minutes. Using a serrated knife, cut the loaf into biscotti shapes and place them cut side down on the baking sheet. Allow them to bake another 25 minutes. 

Once you have removed them from the oven (and they are fully baked), allow them to cool for a few moments. Then, melt your pat of butter in the microwave and place some confectioners sugar on plate. Using a brush, brush the melted butter onto the crust of the biscotti and them roll it in the confectioners sugar to coat. Repeat with all the biscotti until done. 

Enjoy with a nice cup of coffee or cocoa!