A flaky pastry dough is baked onto greased wooden clothespins and then filled with a sweet, nutty ricotta filling.
INGREDIENTS (for 2 servings):
- 1 1/2 teaspoons active dry yeast
- 1/4 cup warm milk
- 2 cups all-purpose flour
- 2 tablespoons white sugar
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 3/4 cup butter
- 2 eggs, beaten
- 1 (15 ounce) container ricotta cheese
- 1/4 cup white sugar
- 2 egg whites, stiffly beaten
- 1 cup chopped red and green candied cherries
- 1/4 cup chopped walnuts
- 1/2 cup semisweet chocolate chips
Place warm milk in a small bow and sprinkle the yeast over the top; stir and set aside. In a large bowl, stir together the flour, 2 tablespoons sugar and salt. Cut in the butter until lumps are no larger than peas. Stir in the yeast mixture and eggs to form a dough. Shape dough into a ball, place in a greased bowl, cover and refrigerate overnight.
Preheat the oven to 300 degrees F (150 degrees C). Divide dough into 2 pieces. Roll each piece out into a 10 inch square. Cut into 14 strips. Wrap each strip in an overlapping spiral around the length of a greased wooden clothes pin. You can roll the pastry in sugar at this point if you like. Place covered clothes pins 2 inches apart onto ungreased cookie sheets.
Bake for 20 minutes in the preheated oven, until golden brown. Carefully remove clothespins while cookies are still warm and place cookies on a wire rack to cool completely.
To make the filling: In a medium bowl, stir together the ricotta cheese and 1/4 cup of white sugar. Fold in the beaten egg whites until evenly distributed. Gently fold in the candied cherries, walnuts and chocolate chips. Spoon into a pastry bag fitted with a large tip and pipe the filling into the cookies. Serve immediately after filling..