Panna cotta is Italian for "cooked cream" and is an unbaked, eggless custard which tastes superb. The texture is very smooth and silky and does not feel rich at all. Since this version is a heart healthy one, it uses just half-n-half and does not set hard, but is kind of delicate and wobbly. Usually panna cotta is best served in individual molds or cups and served either out of the mold on a serving platter or within the bowls. I would suggest serving in the bowls themselves because it could loose shape while transferring onto the serving platter. This recipe is so simple, the cooking part was done in a few minutes. Then came the painful wait for the cream to set. Once we took the pictures, it was gone in a matter of seconds. I had just made only half the recipe, we only wish we had more! With only a few ingredients and a quick prep time, this is my kind of recipe! Gustare (enjoy)!!
Recipe (Serves 4):
Half-and-half - 2 cups
Unflavoured gelatin - 1 1/2 tsp
Sugar - 1/4 cup
Vanilla - 1 tsp
Dash of salt
Raspberry sauce or any other sauce
Pour half-and-half into a 1 1/2 quart saucepan.
Sprinkle gelatin evenly over cold half-and-half.
Let stand for 10 minutes.
Heat the half-and-half mixture over medium-high heat for about 5-7 minutes, stirring constantly, until gelatin is dissolved and the mixture is just beginning to simmer.
Do not allow to boil. Remove from heat.
Stir in the sugar, vanilla and salt until the sugar is dissolved.
Pour the mixture into four 1/2 cup ramekins or 6-oz custard cups.
Cover with plastic wrap and refrigerate for about 4 hours or until set.
When ready to serve, run a thin knife around the edge of each panna cotta.
Dip the bottom of each ramekin into a bowl of very hot water for 5 seconds.
Immediately place a serving plate upside down onto each ramekin, turn plate and ramekin over and remove the ramekin.
Serve with a sauce of your choice.
Source: Betty Crocker Cookbook, heart health edition.
- Wet a mold with cold water and without drying, pour the warm panna cotta mixture into the mold. This usually helps in the easy release of the custard.
- I served the dessert with pureed strawberry.