Saturday, 2 January 2010

Vanilla panna cotta with raspberry sauce

The CCD (Caked Crusader’s Da) isn’t really a huge dessert fan so when he requested this for Christmas dessert I knew he must have fallen for it in a big way – and I can understand why. He struggles with overly sweet things and panna cotta manages to be satisfying and rich and creamy but with hardly any sugar at all.

This recipe made the silkiest, smoothest most divine panna cotta I’ve ever tasted...and I’ve tasted plenty! Very easy to make – much easier than say, a crème brulee but very impressive when served.

Here they are just made, about to set. The vanilla seeds look so pretty:

The one thing I’d say about this recipe is that – for my tastes – there was far too much raspberry sauce; you can probably see that from the photos. I’m setting the recipe out as I made it but next time I make this (oh yes, there will be many ‘next times’!) I’d halve the raspberry sauce amount. It does need the raspberry sauce but I served far too much – it needs just a little swoosh on the plate, like you get in restaurants.

One other thing – the recipe said to serve with a sprig of mint...I think you know my view about that!


For the panna cotta:
3 gelatine leaves
250ml milk (anything but skimmed – does that even contain milk?)
250ml double cream
1 vanilla pod, cut open and seeds scraped out
25g caster sugar

For the raspberry sauce:
175g caster sugar
175ml water
350g raspberries


- Soak the gelatine leaves in a bowl of cold water until they are soft.

- Place the milk, cream, vanilla pod, vanilla seeds and sugar in a saucepan and bring to a simmer.

- Discard the vanilla pod.

- Squeeze as much water as you can out of the gelatine leaves and whisk into the creamy mixture. It will dissolve pretty quickly but make sure you’ve thoroughly whisked it in as you don’t want lumps.

- Ladle the mixture into your ramekins (4 large or 6 small) and press a sheet of clingfilm onto the surface of each – this stops a skin forming.

- Leave to cool before refrigerating for at least a couple of hours (overnight is best).

- For the sauce, place the sugar and water into a pan and bring to the boil.

- Reduce the heat and simmer until the sugar has dissolved. You can tell this by dipping a spoon into the liquid and then checking the back of the spoon for crystals; there shouldn’t be any.

- Take the pan from the heat and add the raspberries. Using a hand blender pulp the raspberries until you have a sauce.

- Sieve the sauce to remove the raspberry pips.

- Refrigerate until required.

- To serve turn the panna cotta out into a bowl or onto a plate. I found the easiest way to turn them out was to rapidly shake the ramekins from side to side.

- Spoon the raspberry sauce around the panna cotta and serve.

- Bask in the glory of the wonderful thing you have made.

- Eat.


James B said...

I have never made panna cotta before, and it something I want to do this year. I'm bookmarking this post for future use! Thanks.

C said...

They look really lovely - raspberries and vanilla are a great combo. I've been meaning to make panna cotta for ages now, so perhaps this will prompt me to overcome my nerves about using gelatine and finally get round to it!!!

Anonymous said...

Hi have also never made or eaten panna cotta before, (sad life I must had led!!) like the idea of the raspberry sauce so will have to try this Nikki

Ling's Passion said...

Hmm....this looks and sound tasty. Must certainly try this recipe out. Thanks for sharing. Opps almost forget...Happy New Year!

Patty O. said...

Mmmmm.....I discovered panna cotta last year and couldn't believe my luck. It is so creamy and easy, just like you said. I recently made some because I needed to use some leftover whipping cream. I added nutmeg and cinnamon to try to make it taste like eggnog. But, I think I love it best with a fruit sauce. I can't wait to try your recipe. I didn't know that you were supposed to leave the panna cotta out before refrigerating. Good to know. Thanks!

Dee said...

Love, LOVE, love. Eli and I love panna cotta. We've been making a basil flower and vanilla bean version with strawberry sauce. Been dying to make a raspberry sauce but they're just too expensive here :(

glamah16 said...

Panna cotta is always good. Men love desserts like this.