Sfogliatelle Filling

This filling is mostly used for sfogliatelle riccia, but works nicely as a bake-in filling in other applications. It’s a touch on the fussy side, but the results are worth it. You’ll need:

2 cups whole milk
pinch salt
5 ounces (generous 3/4 cup) semolina
7 ounces (1 cup) ricotta cheese
4 ounces (generous 1/2 cup) sugar
2 egg yolks
3 ounces (about 1/2 cup) candied citrus peels or candied cherries, finely chopped
2 teaspoons vanilla extract
1/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon

Pour the milk into a medium saucepan and add the salt.

Bring the mixture to the boil. Sprinkle in the semolina, whisking gently all the while to keep lumps from forming. Cook the mixture for 2-3 minutes until it thickens to a paste-like consistency.

About like so. Remove it from the heat, pour it into a bowl and allow it to cool.

Meanwhile, press the ricotta through a fine mesh strainer, again, to eliminate lumps.

Like this. Huh. Looks pretty much the same. Oh well.

Combine all the ingredients in a bowl…

…and stir them together.

Cover the filling with plastic wrap and put it in the refrigerator until you’re ready to use it. It will store up to two days.

10 thoughts on “Sfogliatelle Filling”

  1. If you prepared the orange peel specifically for this recipe would you still roll them in sugar? Can’t wait to see what comes next!

    1. Hi Judy!

      Very good question. You can do either since the granulated sugar will simply dissolve anyway. As you can see from the photos I incorporated mine before I’d sugared them. This filling isn’t as sweet as some versions, however, so a little extra sugar won’t matter if you do decide to go with sugared peels.


      – Joe

  2. Could I use an orange or lemon marmalade in place of the peel? If I just down a bit on the other liquids? I made meyer lemon jam from my lemon tree and was wondering how else to use it.

    1. Hey Anna!

      Interesting idea. You’d obviously want to leave out the sugar…hmm…I can’t think of a reason why it would’t work provided the milk-flour mixture was good and thick. Let me know!

      – Joe

    1. Hey Cath!

      They weren’t terribly sticky once I started mixing actually. To tell you the truth I was a bit surprised! 😉

      Thanks for the question!

      – Joe

  3. Hi there can you make these and do a buttercream filling how would I keep the shape of the lobster tail

    1. Hey Colin!

      You certainly can do a buttercream filling, though I’ll caution you that that would be VERY rich. As for the lobster tail shape, it’s not terrible easy to get, but once it’s baked up it holds its shape very nicely.


      – Joe

    1. Hey Dora! In New York they pronounce it sfwee-a-DELL.

      Great (and very understandable) question. 😉


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