Pinna Cotta

Posted: November 24, 2014 in Dessert

Panna Cotta literally translates as “cooked cream” in Italian. Panna Cotta is the perfect dessert, whether you’re throwing a fancy party or a small one! These softly set and creamy Italian puddings are so silky-smooth they slip down beautifully at the end of a meal. Perfect served with fresh berries or fruits according to the season. They are also perfect for dinner parties because they can be made a day or two in advance and kept refrigerated until ready to be served.

Panna Cotta


Recipe Type: Puddings, Creams, and Custards, Dessert, Gelatin
Panna Cotta Recipe – How To Make Panna Cotta:

Menu: Grilled Rack of Lamb Dinner, Christmas Dinner
Cuisine: Italian
Yields: 4 to 6 servings
Prep time: 15 min
Chill time: 3 hours or overnight


Ingredients:

2 1/2 teaspoons unflavored gelatin*
1/2 cup milk
2 1/2 cups heavy cream**
1/2 cup granulated sugar
1 vanilla bean (2-inches long and split lengthwise with a knife) or 2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract
1 cup fresh berries, gently washed, drained, and sweetened to taste***
6 sprigs fresh mint

* It is always best to measure the the amount of gelatin needed as the envelopes of gelatin can vary. When a recipe calls for an envelope of gelatin, it is expecting a quarter of an ounce which is precisely 2 1/2 teaspoons of gelatin.

** Half and half, buttermilk, whole milk, and/or sour cream may be substituted for part of the cream.

*** Any assortment of fresh, seasonal fruit may be served with panna cotta, but berries are especially nice. To use other ripe, soft fruits, such as cherries, peaches or apricots, just remove the stones and peels as necessary and cut them into thin slices or bite-size pieces.


Preparation:

In a small bowl, sprinkle the gelatin over 1/2 cup milk; let stand until the gelatin is softened, about 5 minutes.

In a large saucepan, combine heavy cream and sugar. Add vanilla extract or vanilla bean. If using a vanilla bean, slice the bean lengthwise and scrape out seeds into cream (add whole bean to cream for additional flavor). Bring cream just to a simmer (do not let it boil), whisking occasionally until sugar has completely dissolved; remove from heat and remove vanilla bean pod. Add the softened gelatin mixture and whisk to completely dissolve the gelatin.

Panna CottaStrain hot cream mixture into a large glass measuring cup with a pouring spout; pour into ramekins or custard cups. NOTE: Don’t skip the straining step as it removes any bits of un-dissolved gelatin and insures a nice smooth dessert. Also, don’t let the cream mixture cool before straining. If using a vanilla bean, lightly swirl the cream to distribute the seeds evenly. Refrigerate for at least 3 hours or overnight.

To unmold and serve, carefully dip bottom of each ramekin in a baking pan of hot water briefly. Run a thin knife around edge of each ramekin to loosen it from the inside of the bowl. Wipe the outside of the mold dry and place on individual chilled serving plate (topside down). Invert the custard onto the plate and carefully lift off ramekin (shake gently to release).

Garnish with berries or fruit of your choice. See Topping Variations below.

Makes 4 to 6 servings (depending on size of the custard cups).

Advertisements

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s