Canutillos

Galician Pastries Filled with Orujo Cream

Preparation info

  • Difficulty

    Easy

  • Makes

    12

Appears in

MoVida Rustica

By Frank Camorra and Richard Cornish

Published 2009

  • About

ORUJO IS LIKE GRAPPA, ONLY BETTER. I LOVE IT. SPANISH RESTAURANTS OFTEN OFFER A COMPLIMENTARY SERVE AT THE END OF A MEAL. UNLIKE COFFEE, WHICH I FEEL IS A FULL STOP’ TO A MEAL, ORUJO IS A SEAMLESS SEGUE THAT ALLOWS YOU TO TAKE YOUR COAT AND WALK OUT INTO THE NIGHT AIR. THE GALICIAN ALBARIÑO ORUJO IS JUST STUNNING, AND IN THIS DISH IT HAS A FRESH QUALITY THAT FLAVOURS THE CUSTARD THAT FILLS THESE ENTICINGLY SIMPLE LITTLE DEEP-FRIED PASTRIES SPIKED WITH PEDRO XIMÉNEZ. YOU CAN BUY THE METAL CANNOLI TUBES USED TO MAKE THE PASTRIES IN ANY GOOD COOKERY SUPPLY SHOP.

Ingredients

  • 2 eggs
  • 2 egg yolks
  • 125 ml (4 fl oz/½ cup) Pedro Ximénez sherry
  • 280 g (10 oz/ cups) plain (all-purpose) flour, sifted
  • 80 g ( oz) unsalted butter, softened
  • olive oil, for deep-frying
  • icing (confectioners’) sugar, to dust
  • 1 litre (35 fl oz/4 cups) milk
  • 2 cinnamon sticks
  • 200 g (7 oz/heaped ¾ cup) caster (superfine) sugar
  • 6 egg yolks
  • 70 g (2½ oz/heaped ½ cup) real cornflour (cornstarch) (see glossary)
  • 40 ml ( fl oz) orujo or grappa

Method

Using electric beaters, whisk one egg, both egg yolks and the sherry for 15 minutes, or until the mixture is frothy and doubled in volume. Add the flour and butter and mix until a sticky dough forms. Turn out onto a lightly floured surface and shape into a ball, then place in a bowl, cover with plastic wrap and refrigerate for 1 hour.

Meanwhile, make the custard filling. Place the milk and cinnamon sticks in a heavy-based saucepan and bring to just below the boil. Reduce the heat to low and simmer for 5 minutes, then remove from the heat and discard the cinnamon sticks.

Whisk the sugar and egg yolks in a heatproof bowl until thick and pale. Add the cornflour and combine well. When the milk has cooled down enough that it won’t curdle the egg, gradually whisk it into the egg mixture, then add the orujo and combine well.

Return the mixture to the saucepan and, whisking continuously, cook over medium heat for 10–12 minutes, or until thickened. Remove from the heat, pour into a bowl and cover closely with a round of baking paper to prevent a skin forming. Allow to cool, then refrigerate for 3 hours.

Roll out the pastry on a lightly floured surface into a log about 5 cm (2 inches) in diameter. Slice off discs 1 cm (½ inch) thick, then roll each disc on a well-floured surface into rounds 2 mm (1/16 inch) thick and cover with a clean cloth. Lightly beat the remaining egg.

Fill a deep-fryer or large heavy-based saucepan one-third full of oil and heat to 180°C (350°F), or until a cube of bread dropped into the oil browns in 15 seconds. Working one at a time and leaving the other pastry rounds covered while you work, wrap one pastry circle around a lightly greased metal cannoli tube, brush the edges lightly with beaten egg, then press the edges together to seal well.

Deep-fry the pastry for 1½ minutes, or until golden. Remove from the oil, slide the pastry off the tube into the oil and deep-fry for another 30 seconds, or until the inside is dry and crisp. Using tongs, remove from the oil and drain on paper towel. Repeat with the remaining pastry rounds and leave to stand until cool.

Spoon the cooled custard into a piping (icing) bag fitted with a 1.5 cm ( inch) nozzle and fill the cooled pastry shells. Dust with icing sugar and serve immediately.

CUSTARD FILLING