Deconstructed food is on the way out.

Fifteen years ago, no one had ever heard of it. Ten years ago it was becoming popular. Five years ago it was getting overdone. Now, in many cases, it is just silly.

For those still not used to the term, a deconstructed dish takes they key ingredients to a more complex dish and presented them in a new way that makes you see the dish in a new way. When done well, it can be very interesting and a good way to highlight the building blocks of the dish. When done poorly the ingredients are either just put out as individual components without any form change, or you have a plate with a half of a carrot and a shaving of beef and potato and it is called stew.

I don’t really make much in the way of deconstructed food, but this recipe caught my eye. I like cannoli and not having to worry about making the shells was REALLY appealing. See my previous attempts here.

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This was delicious. It is perfect for a party and is pretty easy to make.

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A few ingredients here.

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Mixing the filling.

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Dropping in the wonton wrappers.

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Drying off.

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I threw some of the mini chips into the dip.

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A rainbow of toppings.

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So sweet and luscious!

Deconstructed Cannoli Chips and Dip

Prep Time: 0 hours 15 minutes | Cook Time: 0 hours 20 minutes | Makes: 4 servings | Difficulty: Easy


  • Canola oil, for frying
  • 1 package (about 36) square wonton wrappers, cut diagonally in half
  • 2 cups whole milk ricotta
  • 1/2 cup confectioners’ sugar, plus more for dusting
  • 3 tablespoons orange liqueur
  • 1 cup heavy cream
  • 1 cup miniature semisweet chocolate chips
  • 1/2 cup pistachios, coarsely chopped
  • 1/2 cup maraschino cherries, chopped
  • 1/2 orange, zested


Fill a Dutch oven one-third full with oil and heat to 350 degrees F.

Fry the wontons in one layer, not overcrowding the pot. Flip the wontons once or twice until golden brown, 4 to 5 minutes. Remove the wontons with tongs or a slotted spoon and drain on a large wire rack set over a shallow pan. Repeat until all the wontons are fried.

Mix the ricotta, sugar and liqueur until well combined in a large bowl. Whip the cream in a separate bowl until soft peaks form, using a hand mixer. Fold the whipped cream and 1/2 cup of the chocolate chips gently into the ricotta mixture.

Add the ricotta-cream mixture to a medium dip bowl or 8-by-8-inch baking dish and spread evenly. Starting from the left side of bowl, make a row, from top to bottom, of pistachios, followed by a row of the remaining 1/2 cup chocolate chips, then the cherries. Grate fresh orange zest over the bowl and plate the wonton chips on the side. Dust the chips with sugar and serve.


Tags: , , , , , , , , , , ,

Categories: Cheese2, Chocolate, Dessert, Italian, kosher, Recipes, Vegetarian

Author:The Ranting Chef

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13 Comments on “Deconstructed”

  1. themodernsomm
    September 5, 2013 at 11:31 am #

    I have got to try this. I’ve always had a hard time with cannoli cream. I’ve only tried making it a few times, but it always wound up loose and lumpy. It’s been years since I tried making it, so hopefully I’ve gotten better haha. Any tips?


    • September 5, 2013 at 2:20 pm #

      I think it really comes down to the ricotta you use. Try to bypass the tubs next to the sour cream (I think they are fine for lasagna or other cooked items but don’t work as well in the raw ones). I have had success at my local grocery in their specialty cheese section as well as going to an Italian deli and getting it there.


  2. September 5, 2013 at 11:38 am #

    I love cannoli! I will have to give this a try. I’m not usually a big participant in the reconstructed food trend either. Thanks for sharing!


  3. September 5, 2013 at 8:53 pm #

    What a cool idea, to use wonton wrappers!


  4. September 5, 2013 at 10:09 pm #

    This is a great time-saving idea! I love cannoli. I know this may be anathema, but I might try it with tofu for a vegan version. It’s blends up a lot like riccota. Nice site!


  5. September 5, 2013 at 10:24 pm #

    I saw “deconstructed” and the photo and immediately knew the post was going to be about cannoli. Yummmmmm


  6. September 6, 2013 at 6:19 am #

    Reblogged this on Take Back the Kitchen and commented:
    Personally, I’d rather deconstruct literature than an actual dish, but a new spin on filled cannoli is okay in my book. I also enjoyed a deconstructed spin on gumbo (which amounted to stuffed jumbo shrimp) while in San Francisco.


  7. September 6, 2013 at 6:37 am #

    I didn’t think you could use wonton wrappers for a sweet dish. I wish they taught me how to be this innovative with recipes when I was in cooking school, but that’s why I’m out and looking for work: so I can learn from others and teach myself something new.


  8. September 6, 2013 at 1:53 pm #

    “Deconstructed” also sounds like a good rebranding of regular cannoli if you accidentally break the shells 😛 Joking aside, this dish looks like it’ll be an awesome “chips and dip for dessert” for my next party!


  9. September 6, 2013 at 10:00 pm #

    I like this because I don’t like that cannolis are cold. So with this you can serve the “dip” cold as it should be, but the “shells” warms. And I think what Alice @ Nom Nom Cat said is true it would be awesome and fun to have “chips and dip for dessert”.


  10. September 10, 2013 at 11:17 am #

    I’ve tried cannolis before and they have tasted like licorice and grainy. This is way better!
    Thank you for sharing!


  11. September 12, 2013 at 3:33 am #

    Sounds like a fun recipe to try sometime. Keep on cooking!


  12. September 30, 2013 at 7:50 pm #

    If for no other reason I now know what deconstructed means. I watch a lot of cooking shows and they always talk about deconstructing the dish NOW I know .Thank you


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