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Sfogliatelle/ Neapolitan Cornets (filled with ricotta cheese, cream and candied fruit; flavored with almond extract)
Originated from: Naples, Campania, Italy
Occasion: Weddings and very special events
Contributed by: Taken from "Southern Italian Cookery" by Colette Black (Crowell-Collier Press, 1963)

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2 cups flour
1/4 cup sugar
4 tablespoons butter
1/2 cup ice water
1/2 cup melted butter
1/4 teaspoon salt

3/4 pound ricotta cheese
2 tablespoons sugar
1/4 cup light cream
1 tablespoon chopped candied fruit
1 teaspoon almond extract



Sift the flour, salt, and sugar into a bowl. Using the fingers, blend in the 4 tablespoons butter. Add just enough of the ice water to make the particles cling together.

Knead on a lightly floured surface until dough is smooth. Wrap in waxed paper and chill 30 minutes.

Divide dough in 3 equal parts.

Roll out each part into a rectangle about 8 by 16 inches. The dough should be paper thin, so stretch it gently.

Brush each layer heavily with melted butter, then put one on top of the other.

Brush top layer again with butter. Roll up tightly like a jelly roll.

Wrap in a towel and chill 30 minutes.

Cut the roll into 1/2-inch thick slices. Cover with the towel and let stand 15 minutes. The making of the cornets requires a little practice, so work patiently. Place a slice on the palm of the left hand. Place the tip of the right thumb in the center of the slice and press down gently, so as to form a cone, using the fingers of the left hand to help shape it; it should resemble a miniature ice cream cone, about 2 1/2-3 inches wide at the opening. Squeeze the base together, so that the filling will not leak out.


Mix all the ingredients together. Fill each cone with about 1 tablespoon of the mixture, and flatten the cones slightly.

Arrange on a greased baking sheet.

Bake in a 375 degree oven 30 minutes, or until browned and crisp.

Cool on a cake rack, and dust with confectioners' sugar.

Makes about 8.


This recipe was taken from "The Southern Italian Cookbook" by Colette Black and illustrated by Janice Cowen. It was published by Crowell-Collier Press in 1963.............. P.S. Wikipedia suggests that "sfogliatelle" (pronounced sofol-j'ah-TEL-e) originated in Naples and "are thought to have been perfected in convents, because their making is so time-consuming." However, some food historians believe sfogliatelli may have had its origins in the Middle East. Apparently, the phyllo dough, often called "millefeulle" in France and "millefoglie'" ("a thousand leaves") in Italy was invented by the Arabs and picked up by Europeans. The traditional stofgliatelle pastries are made with layers of phyllo dough which use rendered pork fat though nowadays some pastry chefs prefer to use butter. The pastries come shaped like shells or cones and are generally filled with orange-flavored ricotta. Stofgliatelle: pastries are possibly Italy's most famous dolce. In North America "stogliatelle" and sfogliatelle ricce" generally refer to one and the same pastry; however, in Italy the word "ricce" is added to "sfogliatelle" to distinquish it from newer and cheaper versions of sfogliatelle which are made with shortcrust pastry dough rather than phyllo dough. The larger versions of sofogliatelle ricce are sold in shops as "lobster tails" because they resemble their shape.... To-die-for "sfogliatelle ricce" are generally available in North American Italian pastry shops though they are rather expensive; recently sfogliatelle ricce can also be bought frozen in big "box-store" though obviously they're not as tasty as the fresh ones. In the 1950s sfogliatelle were served only at weddings, baptisms and other major life celebrations. Nowadays, they can be part of any Sunday dinner. Very few (if any) North Americans make their own sfogliatelle. This is one pastry best left to professionals. However, there are many websites (e.g. www.epicurious.com and www.recipezaar.com) that do have recipes and for the cook who likes a challenge this will definitely provide it. Comments and photo of store-bought stogliatelle ricce: Mary Melfi.

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