The Dom DeLuise is our cannoli-inspired cupcake, which was really a “must” for us for reasons beyond the fact that we’re from southwest Brooklyn. In the weeks after we first met, I told myself the reason I thought about Matt a thousand times a day was because for the first time ever, I had a friend who was as obsessed with food as I was. It absolutely wasn’t because we were both madly in love with each other, as every person who knew both of us had already figured out. I’m not that smart. Sue me. One day I learned we were both off from work and decided to go out and buy him a bunch of my favorite foods “just because.” I showed up at his house with a huge bag of antipasto, a pan of chicken parmigiana, and a box of my favorite dessert—cannoli. We ate nearly everything I brought while hanging out on the couch and watching old episodes of Full House. (How in God’s name did I not realize I was in love with this guy? Al, you are so, so stupid.) While I was oblivious, Matt wasn’t. I’ll let him tell you the next part.
Preheat the oven to 350°F. Line a cupcake pan with 12 baking cups.
Place the sugar and pistachios in a food processor and process until the pistachios are finely ground. Set aside.
Melt the butter in a microwave at 60% power for 1½ to 2 minutes. Keep the butter warm; do not allow it to sit and cool off.
In a stand mixer with the paddle attachment, beat the eggs and egg whites on medium-low speed for 2 minutes until lightly foamy.
Increase the mixer speed to medium-high. Pour the warm butter into the eggs slowly, so that the mixture tempers and the eggs do not scramble. Once the butter is added, reduce the speed to medium-low.
With the mixer running, add the milk, vanilla, and salt. Mix for 1 minute until well combined.
Sift together the flour and baking powder and stir into the pistachio mixture. Add to the
batter. Mix on medium until just combined, about 30 seconds. Remove the bowl and
paddle from the mixer and use the paddle to scrape the bottom and sides of the bowl, ensuring that everything is well mixed.
Scoop the batter into the prepared baking cups, filling them two thirds
of the way.
Bake in the middle of the oven for 20 to 25 minutes, rotating the pan
halfway through. The cupcakes are done when the centers spring back
when you touch them.
Remove the cupcakes from the oven. Let cool completely.
Cannoli Buttercream // Toppings
French Buttercream (recommended): Prepare the buttercream, add the pressed ricotta and vanilla until fully incorporated.
For American Frosting: Prepare the recipe as directed, only replacing mascarpone with the pressed ricotta, add the vanilla and beat well.
Assembly: Fill a pastry bag fitted with a plain or fluted tip with cannoli buttercream and pipe onto
each pistachio cupcake.
Mix the chocolate chips, roasted pistachios, and candied citrus, if using, in a bowl and sprinkle on top of the cupcakes.
Half-Assed Corner: Skip the citron if you can’t find it -- which, odds are, you won’t be able to unless you live close to an Italian or Middle Eastern specialty store. It’s not a make-or-break ingredient.
Allison Robicelli is a cookbook author, humorist, host of the Robicelli Argument Clinic Podcast, occasional TV personality, restauranteur (Oaxaca Taqueria & Rip's Malt Shop in NYC), wife, mother, and all around good time.