Before everything shut down and the library closed, I checked out two books – Jose Andres Vegetables Unleashed and Delicious Poke Cakes. Guess which book Cannoli Poke Cake is from? Not Vegetables Unleashed.
Yes. It is from Delicious Poke Cakes, which is a fun little cookbook I get to take care of until the library re-opens and things get back to normal. So it looks like I’ll be making a lot of poke cakes, and luckily this one was pretty fun. With a name like Cannoli Poke Cake you’d think it might have ricotta, but instead it gets its “cannoliesque” qualities from cream cheese and whipping cream. Don’t ask me how condensed milk fits in with the cannoli theme, but it works. The crunchy topping of broken Pirouette cookies is supposed to mimic cannoli shells. Naturally, I forgot the cookies and ended up having to use mini M&Ms which are so very Italian.
I guess I’ll never have to make cannoli again now that we have this cake. Heh. But seriously, it was pretty good and it was fun pretending it was like actual cannoli.
Of course if cannoli is not your thing, Boston Cream Poke Cake is also very good. And if you don’t like cake mix, you can make poke cake from scratch. Yes, that’s right. I almost forgot all about the time I made the Scratch Chocolate Pudding Poke Cake, but if I recall it was a success.
Cannoli Poke Cake
- 1 15.25 oz package white cake mix
- 2 tablespoons all purpose flour optional
- 1 3.4 oz package vanilla pudding mix
- 4 large eggs
- 1 cup water
- 1/3 cup vegetable oil
- 1 can 14 oz condensed milk
- 1 cup heavy whipping cream
- 8 oz softened cream cheese softened and room temperature
- 1 cup powdered sugar
- 2 tablespoons milk
- 1 ½ teaspoons vanilla extract or vanilla bean paste
- ½ teaspoon cinnamon optional
- 12 Pirouette Cookies or Graham Crackers optional
- Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Spray a 13x9 inch pan with cooking spray. A glass dish works well for this.
- In a mixing bowl, using an electric mixer, mix together cake mix, pudding mix, eggs, water and oil. Beat for 2 minutes. Pour into the pan and bake for 25 to 30 minutes or until cake springs back when touched. Let the cake cool for 15 minutes, then use a drinking straw to poke holes all over it.
- Drizzle the condensed milk over the cake letting it fall into the holes. Cover loosely and let cool. This should take at least an hour or possibly longer if you used the glass dish.
- Prepare the topping. Beat the cream until stiff peaks form.
- In a second bowl, beat together the softened cream cheese and sugar until creamy and smooth. Beat in the milk and vanilla, then fold the whipped cream into the cream cheese mixture. Spread over the cooled cake.
- Sprinkle top with cinnamon or cocoa powder if desired.