Bread, dough and batter Desserts and sweets Recipes

Fried canes from O Carballiño

Fried canes from O Carballiño


  • Half
  • 90 minutes
  • For 6 people
  • 1.1 € / person
  • 310kcal per 100g.

How to prepare some Galician fried canes . If I have to decide on a dessert recipe from Ourense, and we have a few, it is O Carballiño’s fried canes .

This delicious traditional dessert is already known throughout Spain, an exquisite dish combining the crispness of the cane with the delicious softness of the pastry cream.

The fried rods consist of strips or ribbons of dough that were rolled up in a river reed (now metallic canutillos are used, and you can even find them made of Teflon so that the dough does not stick) and then they are fried in an oil of soft olive.

The result is a delicious crunchy and golden dough canutillo. Combined with the creaminess of the filling and the cover of fine sugar, it becomes a dessert that is hard to forget, a classic in Ourense pastry.

Today it is part of the daily production of any Galician pastry, but the most prestigious are those of a family from the town of Carballino. For this reason they incorporated the name of the Arenteiro town.

I have done a little research on the history of this famous dessert in Ourense. Like most Spanish sweets, it has an Arab origin . They are very similar to the recipe that we find in Sicily (Italy) where this sweet is typical in carnival, the Sicilian Cannoli . In Sicily the pasta was wrapped around a piece of cane just like in Spain.

Currently it is rolled in metal molds. The difference with the recipe that I present today is that they are usually filled with ricotta cheese. A mixture of sugary and flavored cottage cheese. Even in some places they add Mascarpone cheese and it is often flavored with different combinations. The most common are vanilla, marsala wine (very typical in Italy), pistachios, rose water, chocolate, mint or other flavorings.

The canutillos or fried canes are absolutely delicious, easy to prepare and the result is frankly surprising. I invite you to be encouraged to make them at home or buy them on your next visit to Ourense.

Preparation of the dough for the reeds

  1. In a large bowl we introduce part of the strength flour . We leave about 2 tablespoons to fatten the dough. We wash the lemon, dry it and then grate approximately half. We introduce the zest in the bowl.
  2. In the center of the bowl, with a spoon we make a hole and introduce the warm water and a splash of sweet wine. In my case I used a little Port, this ingredient is optional.
  3. Beat with a wooden spoon from the center outwards and gradually mix with the flour.
  4. Add the extra virgin olive oil and the pinch of salt. We continue removing what begins to be the dough. For now it will be a sticky but firm mixture, a dough that does not stick to your hands.
  5. We prepare the area where we are going to knead, for example the kitchen counter is perfect. We fill the area of ​​the counter with flour, remove the dough from the bowl and begin to work the dough with your hands. Little by little we can manipulate the dough more quickly, it will remain elastic and homogeneous. This process takes about 10 minutes.

Shaping the reeds before frying

  1. We are turning the dough into a ball. We put the dough in a bowl and cover with an cotton cloth for an hour and let it rest in the fridge. And that’s it, there we have the dough to start preparing the Carballiño reeds.
  2. We take the dough out of the fridge and spread it out with the help of a rolling pin.
  3. Sprinkle flour as we stretch and turn it over if necessary until it is 1 cm. thick approximately.
  4. Next we cut it into strips of ½cm to 2-3 mm (as finite as possible) of width more or less.
  5. We take a metal cylinder and roll the dough from the base to finish the strip.
  6. We do the same until we finish with the strips of dough. In my case I have a lot of metal reeds. But if you don’t have enough, you just have to do it in batches.

Preparation of the pastry cream

  1. The first step is to prepare the ingredients with which we are going to flavor the milk. We wash the lemon very well and peel its skin in a fine way, without much white that then makes the dessert bitter. We open the vanilla bean and remove the seeds that we will reserve to add later to the milk.
  2. We heat the milk over medium heat almost to the boiling point. We lower the temperature and remove from the heat. We add the vanilla seeds, the lemon peel and finally the cinnamon stick.
  3. We leave everything to rest for 5 minutes (infusing the milk) while we beat the eggs.
  4. We separate the yolks from the whites and put them in a bowl with the sugar (100 g). We beat vigorously with an electric mixer or some rods until we achieve a foamy mixture.
  5. Add to the bowl containing the cream of yolks and sugar the fine cornmeal. To mix better we can help ourselves with a little of the hot milk from step 2. We beat everything very well.
  6. We heat the milk again at medium temperature. About 10 minutes with the vanilla, the lemon peel and the cinnamon. After cooking we pass through a strainer to remove impurities.
  7. We put the casserole with the milk over low heat. We add the mixture of egg cream, sugar and fine cornmeal.
  8. We continuously stir with a few rods without lumps and taking care that it never boils. When it begins to thicken, remove from the heat and continue to move for one more minute. Keep in mind that although the cream is a little liquid it will thicken when it cools.

Frying the fried canes

  1. We fill a pastry bag, let it rest 1/2 hour and then store in the fridge until it cools. We reserve to fill the fried canes.
  2. We put a pan with olive oil and heat over medium heat.
  3. We fry the reeds on all sides until they are golden brown, we use a fork to turn the reed around. We remove to a plate with absorbent kitchen paper to remove the excess oil.
  4. We remove the aluminum bead just before filling it, so you will have the perfect shape. Thanks to the frying oil you will have no problem when removing it. You will see that it comes out in a simple way (but be careful not to burn yourself).
  5. You can buy the rods of stainless steel or other material in any bazaar. In Esther’s case, she asked her mother to get her some canes from the country (that’s what they are called here, to give you an idea of ​​bamboo). And then she asked her husband to cut them to size.
  6. This is an inexpensive alternative, so you can afford to have 40 rods and do whatever you want.

Filling the fried canes and final presentation

  1. We fill a wide bowl with sugar and cinnamon powder (about two teaspoons of cinnamon powder per 100 g of sugar) and mix well with a fork. We batter the fried canes in that mixture, which are well impregnated. A tip, always put them upside down in a wide cup so that there is no sugar left in the tube.
  2. Fill with cream with the pastry bag through both holes until they are full, always just before serving so that the canes do not soften.
  3. Another tip is to store them in a can, they last a long time. And if they are not coated with sugar they can be filled with salty (for example, cream cheese), since the dough is not sweet.
  4. And the best … eat them, that crispy fried dough with a delicious pastry cream. One of the most famous desserts in Ourense and specifically in Carballiño. Do not stop trying them.

Be sure to enjoy all the different desserts with pastry cream  on the blog. You can see all the photos of the step by step of these fried canes in this album.

Tips for perfect fried canes

  • Many cooks use sunflower oil for this recipe because they prevent the typical lumps from forming when frying. I recommend extra virgin olive oil. It enhances the flavor of the dough and gives it a different point, in addition to being a perfect fry.
  • When making the beads, we must not overflow the cylindrical mold at all. Because if not at the time of unmolding the operation is much more difficult and we risk that they break.
  • Inma Martín, she told me on Facebook a good tip. To avoid burning when removing the mold or removing the reeds from the metal molds. It is true that it happened to me the first time too. I advise you two options, the first would be to have many molds. We have 25 at home, which gives us two batches, so we can let the first batch of fry cool down. The second would be to put on some thick rubber gloves to avoid burning your fingers.
  • This sweet in Ourense is famous with pastry cream but they can be filled almost whatever you want. Imagination to the power. From whipped cream, jams or preserves, cream cheese or ricotta such as Sicilian cannoli, chocolate or chestnut cream. Try the filling that you like the most and you will tell me by email.
  • We must fill the eclairs with cream a little before eating them. Do not think to fill them up and eat them the next day. Well, the cream softens the structure of the fried cane and they will not be good. What we want is that the fried cane is very crispy. For example, if they are for food, you fill them an hour before and they will be great. You can store the eclairs that you are not going to fill overnight in an airtight box as if they were cookies.

Cerviño confectionery

  • They say that in the secret recipe of the Cerviño confectionery they add anise, eggs and lemon essence. I do not know if it is true, but if someone wants to try it already tell us. For next time I will try these variations to see how they are.
  • Another presentation option is to run the cream bead through a little icing sugar. This way you avoid excess sugar. Both options (sugar and cinnamon or icing sugar) are delicious.
  • It is best to use a large frying pan, but if the one you have is medium or small, do not use much oil. This will keep the oil temperature constant.
  • The Cerviño confectionery is located in the Ourensana de Carballiño locality. It is famous above all for making one of the richest desserts in all of Galicia. The fried canes of Confitería Cerviño. The reeds are made with a recipe that has been passed down from generation to generation. It is a recipe that is still made by hand and with great raw materials. I leave you the address and information in case you pass through that area, do not stop buying them:
    Confiteria Cerviño Specialty in fried canes
    988270844 – 988274979
    Calle Tomás M. Mosquera 38
    32500 O Carballiño – Ourense.

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