Panna cotta is one of my favorite dessert and one you can enjoy at many Italian restaurants here in LA. It looks and sounds fancy, but it’s incredibly easy to make if you just get the right ingredients, in particular the gelatin. It is also very important to get very fresh ingredients, since it’s basically solid cream, the fresher the cream, the better.
Here it is!!
of work, a couple of hours of waiting for it to chill in the fridge. In total, .
- Serving size: 100g/3.5oz
- Calories per serving:223
- Fat per serving: 12g
- Carbs per serving: 23g
- 150g /5 oz Sugar
- 500 ml/ 2 cups cream
- One vanilla bean (I got a bunch, from Amazon, but you may want to get fewer. It’s around $1/bean).
- Gelatin (I got it in sheets for $4).
- Some butter (optional, to grease the ramekins/mold).
- A wooden spoon
- A container to soak the gelatin
- A pairing knife for the vanilla bean
- A mold or ramekins (you could make one big panna cotta, or make 4 individual servings).
- A stainless steel sieve (optional), like one of these.
With a pairing knife, make an incision on the vanilla bean, and scrape its contents. You can learn how to do it from this youtube video.
Put in the saucepan the cream, sugar, the scraped contents of the vanilla bean and the skin of the vanilla bean. The scraped bean still has lots of flavor!!
Put the saucepan over medium heat. DON’T LET IT BOIL!! We still want that fresh milk flavor, not cooked milk. The goal is to heat the cream up enough to completely dissolve the gelatin.
Once the cream is hot like hot coffee, but not boiling, take the gelatin sheets, squeeze them a little and add them to the cream. Lower the heat and stir until all the gelatin is completely dissolved (a couple of minutes). Now you can turn the heat off, and using the sieve, pour the cream into the mold or ramekins, which you’ll have preemptively buttered. The sieve will trap the vanilla bean, which you could use to flavor your sugar bowl.
At this point, you can put them directly in the fridge, but it’s better to let them cool down a bit, preferably in a water/ice water bath. It will take a few hours for them to solidify.
You can serve it with some fruit sauce, made by cooking for about 20 minutes some blended mixed berries with whole berries and sugar, and letting the sauce cool. It’s also good with chocolate sauce!
I made it for a friends birthday, and as you can see in the picture on the right, it looks good even next to the dessert bought from the bakery! It’s the on the bottom if you hadn’t guessed!
You can make it lighter by substituting some cream with whole milk (one cup cream, one cup milk instead of 2 cups of cream).
Also, instead of vanilla, you could use two tablespoons of powdered cocoa (the unsweetened one, since there’s already sugar in the recipe) for chocolate panna cotta.