Archives for the day Sunday, September 29th, 2013

Italian cooking:Strawberry Panna Cotta with berry sauce and salted caramel cookie bar

 Panna Cotta -“cooked cream” in Italian, was invented in Northern Italy,where cream was famous for.

 It is a classic Italian dessert,which is made from milk,cream,sugar with added gelatin and cool to set.

 They are smooth,silky texture and one spoonful of Panna Cotta will melt in your mouth.

 It is very easy to make and tasty.

 It usually takes 15 minutes or so on the stove and,about 5-6 hours in the fridge and unmold it,garnish it and serve.

 If you make it on Friday night, by the Saturday morning, it will be set nicely and you can enjoy the tasty treats anytime

 Panna Cotta is one of my favorite dessert to taste and I think they are “easy to make dessert” but it can also add elegant,gourmet touch on the plate and they are perfect dessert for romantic dinner as well.

 If you were not confident in unmolding the dessert, you can serve it in the ramekin and simply place the ramekin on the plate,garnish them and serve. Vibrant colored fruits such as berries adds nice touch on the plate.

 My very first Panna Cotta I made was Espresso flavored Panna Cotta, and I have made it when in law family and us visited FL for the family trip.

 As long as you have a good base recipe, you can play around the flavor.

 However, it is best to avoid adding too much high acid content fruits such as pineapple,lime,grapefruits and so forth because it will inhibit the Panna Cotta to set or sometimes separate the layers in stead of nice silky smooth texture.

 If you have watched “Master chef” last season, both contestant Lucca and Natasha made Panna Cotta and Natasha had to toss the Panna Cotta made with lime.

 There was a good reason for that.I wonder if she put too much lime juice in it and it ended up inhibiting gelling or it got the cream and lime separated.

 I think if I really want to make lime Panna Cotta, I may add only touch of lime zest and maybe tiny tiny bit of lime juice probably less than 1 tbs,possibly 1-2 tsp in the cream,sugar,milk mixture.

 Since Panna Cotta is smooth,silky textured dessert, I would not add chopped fruit in the mixture of cream,sugar,milk and I would rather make nice fruits sauce by pureeing the fruits. If you are like me, you can add touch of liqueur in the fruits puree sauce to flavor it up. It is really nice dessert to end the meal.

 Anyway, I had leftover strawberries in the fridge from strawberry shortcake making and, I decided to make strawberry Panna Cotta with it.This one is kids friendly, liqueur free version but, you can add splash of Chamboard “raspberry liqueur” in the berry puree for grown up version.

Strawberry Panna Cotta with berry sauce,served with Salted Caramel cookie bar..

 Ingredients for strawberry Panna Cotta;

1/2C Milk
1 3/4 tsp knox unflavored gelatin
3 oz strawberries stem removed,cut to quarter
1.5 C heavy cream
1/6C honey
1.5 tsp white sugar
pinch of salt
1/8 tsp vanilla extract
fresh raspberry,strawberry,pomegranate for garnish

Ingredients for berry sauce;

3 oz strawberries stem removed,cut to quarter
5 oz fresh raspberries
1 tsp white sugar

Ingredient for salted caramel cookie bar;

1C rolled oats rough ground
1/2C walnuts ground to small
1/4C light brown sugar
4 tbs salted butter
1/16 tsp ground cinnamon
1/8 tsp vanilla extract
1/4 tsp kosher salt

<Strawberry Panna Cotta>

1. In the medium bowl, pour 1/2C milk, add 1 3/4 tsp plain unflavored knox gelatin, and stir and let it bloom;about 3-5 minutes

2. In a blender, add 3 oz wt strawberries stem removed,cut to quarter and puree them.It should be about 1/4C worth puree.

3. In a sauce pan, add milk with gelatin and stir on medium high heat to dissolve the gelatin.

** Do not let it boil

4. Add 1.5 C heavy cream, 1/6C honey, 1.5 tsp white sugar, pinch of salt,vanilla extract and stir

5. Add strawberry puree 1/4 C (from 3 oz wt strawberries)

6. Keep stirring to dissolve sugar,about 6 minutes.

7. Pour it into container

8. Let it cool a bit,and then keep them in the fridge to set

** I like to use small ramekin,small coffee cup as container and, I like to cover them with plastic wrap when I put it into the fridge

9. Wait for 5-6 hours to set

10. Unmold the Panna Cotta

*** How to unmold panna cotta ***

1. boil the water and pour it into baking pan

2. Run the knife around the ramekin and dip the bottom into hot boiling water to melt a bit ; about 25-35 seconds

3. Take the ramekin out from the boiling water and wipe the bottom

4. place the plate over ramekin and invert so the Panna Cotta will fall onto the plate

5. Gently lift the ramekin


11 Pour berry sauce* (recipe follows) over Panna Cotta

12. Garnish the plate with fresh raspberry,pomegranate,strawberries

13. Serve it with Salted caramel cookie bar* (Recipe follows)

14. Enjoy!

<Berry sauce>

1. In the blender, add 3 oz strawberries stem removed,cut to quarter, 5 oz fresh raspberries and puree them

2. Place the kitchen sieve over the sauce pan and strain the berry puree so seeds would not be in the sauce

3. Put the sauce pan on medium high heat and add 1 tsp white sugar and cook it until sugar gets dissolved

4. Set it aside

<Salted caramel cookie bar>

0. Preheat oven 325F

1. To the food processor, add 1C rolled oats and rough chop,and pour it out to medium bowl

2. To the food processor, add 1.2C walnut grind to small and add that to rolled oats bowl

3. To the heavy sauce pan, add 1/4C brown sugar,4 tbs salted butter and stir

4. Add 1/16 tsp ground cinnamon, 1/8 tsp vanilla and stir

5. When it got bubbly, add 1 tsp heavy cream,1/4 tsp kosher salt and stir

6. Add the brown sugar mixture  step <5> into ground oat and ground walnut mixture and mix well to combine

7. To the non stick foil lined baking sheet, pour the oat mixture and cover it with plastic wrap and press with hands to form big thin rectangle, about 1/4″ thickness

** If you like crispier, make it to 1/8″ thickness and watch out the baking time

8. Bake them at 325F about 20-25 minutes

9. Take it out,let it set

10. When cool enough, cut them into 1″ wide strips,and cut it into half length. You would have about 16 strips of cookie bars.


Sep 29, 2013 | Comments are off | Miscellaneous (Cooking)