Chai Panacotta

Sat, 22 Feb 2014 08:07:55 +0000
Panna Cotta is an italian dessert of sweetened cream that is chilled and set with gelatin. The best way to describe it is also the worst way to describe essentially a milk cream jelly...kinda like a cross between a pudding and custard. But the beauty of this dish is that its so incredibly easy to make. If it takes you more than 10mins to make, you are definitely doing something wrong. Pannacotta is also very versatile. It gives a lot of leeway while cooking, and you can experiment infusing it with anything under the sun. Traditionally vanilla was infused...but that is so vanilla! Bad puns aside, I'm infusing mine with these fancy teas (early grey & english breakfast to be more specific) I got from a trip to London. You can obviously use regular tea bags. Also, how cute is the mug?! Adapted from Makes enough for 4 1 cup fresh cream 1 cup milk 1/2 cup sugar 1 vanilla bean or 1 tsp vanilla essence 1 tbsp gelatin (see notes below on gelatin before using)  2 tea bags (optional: If you don't like tea or just want to try making traditional pannacotta just skip the tea bags) Heat the milk, cream and sugar in a saucepan. Ensure the heat is turned on low. Stir occasionally to ensure the sugar has dissolved. Once all ingredients are combined add in the vanilla extract. If using vanilla bean, cut the bean in half and scrape the seeds from (both sides of) the bean into the cream mix. The pod is also flavour, so toss the whole pod into the pan as well. I used vanilla bean pod here and let me tell you, there is ABSOLUTELY no replacing it. The flavour you get with just one measly bean! An essence can never deliver the same flavour. So while it maybe expensive, for dishes like these I'd really recommend spending that extra 200 bucks. I got two beans in one tube. I used one for this dish and the other I mixed with my icing sugar bottle to make vanilla sugar. So there you go, it is definitely not a waste and definitely worth every penny. I'm digressing! At this point add in the tea bags as well. Cover the pan and let it infuse on a low heat for 10 mins. The mixture shouldn't come to a boil. If you think it is going to start boiling, remove from heat and let it infuse on its own for 10 mins. Remove the tea bags and vanilla bean once infused. Taste to check if its yum. Pour gelatin into the hot pannacotta mix and stir till fully disolved. Lightly oil cups or bowls with a neutral tasting oil (I used sunflower). Pour the mix in the cups and let them cool down to room temperature before chilling in the fridge. Chill overnight or until the gelatin sets. Run a sharp knife around the edge of each panna cotta and unmold onto a serving plate. Serve as is or with summer berries. Tip: If you are lazy like me or pressed for time, pour the panna cotta mixture into martini or wine glasses and chill so that you can serve them in the glasses without unmolding P.S: I know you will say that my Panna Cotta looks 'dirty'. Those little polka dots are flecks of Vanilla beans and if u ask me, it looks prettier this way Note: I have only used powdered gelatin so far, and to be honest I haven't found sheet gelatin anywhere in Mumbai Sprinkle granules over the surface of cold water. I used 1 cup of water for 1tbsp of powdered gelatin. Do not dump them in water as the granules in the middle wont dissolve. Let it stand for 10 mins. Heat gently to ensure all granules are dissolved. It is now ready to be poured into the pannacotta mix. Everyone needs a breakfast dessert. My breakfast cuppa has never been this good.
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