Blackout Panna Cotta! Why is it blackout panna cotta, you may wonder. Well, I was in the middle of making it - had the glasses in the freezer so the panna cotta would look nice on the raspberries, when the power went out. I prepared the layers by candlelight.
I'm only giving you one picture, because I love that picture. It's a little too yellow, but I just love that pic. I think it may have something to do with my deep love of that crystal. I have a thing for crystal and glass. If I had my way, I would have tons of it.
The February 2011 Daring Bakers’ challenge was hosted by Mallory from A Sofa in the Kitchen. She chose to challenge everyone to make Panna Cotta from a Giada De Laurentiis recipe and Nestle Florentine Cookies.
Phew! Glad we got that out of the way.
On to the challenge. I chose to make mine with coconut milk. Why? Well, some of you know with my long and stormy relationship with milk. I love it, it hates me. I didn't feel like risking it this time, so I decided to make a coconut milk version. I chose to flavor it with coconut milk caramel, because I love the stuff, and this was a great excuse to make some more!
The Panna Cotta was smooth, and rich, and had just enough gelatin in it. It was a great contrast to my raspberry sauce, since neither were very sweet.
I am happy I got to do this challenge. It also gave me a great opportunity for a rematch with my nemesis, the Florentine cookie. I had tried to do them for Christmas...and it wasn't a success. They tasted great, but no matter how many I put on a pan, then ran together into one big blob...and the rest of the batter cooled and stuck to the bottom of the pan. That stuff was like glue! This recipe, I didn't have the same challenges. Well, the first batch did all run together, but I discovered no matter how little I think the batter is, cut it in 1/2, and the cookies will be a reasonable size and won't be one big blob.
Thanks again for the great challenge, and I look forward to the next one!
For a printable recipe, click here.
Coconut milk caramel Panna Cotta (inspired by Giada’s Vanilla Panna Cotta)
2 cups coconut milk
½ cup coconut milk caramel (You can make this, recipe below)
2 cups heavy cream
1 Tablespoon powdered gelatin (one package)
1 Tablespoons brown sugar
½ t. vanilla extract
- Pour the coconut milk into a bowl or pot and sprinkle gelatin evenly and thinly over the milk (make sure the bowl/pot is cold by placing the bowl/pot in the refrigerator for a few minutes before you start making the Panna Cotta). Let stand for 5 minutes to soften the gelatin.
- Pour the milk into the saucepan/pot and place over medium heat on the stove. Heat this mixture until it is hot, but not boiling, about five minutes. (I whisk it a few times at this stage).
- Next, add the cream, caramel, sugar, and pinch of salt. Making sure the mixture doesn't boil, continue to heat and stir occasionally until the sugar and caramel have dissolved 5-7 minutes.
- Remove from heat, add vanilla, allow it to sit for a few minutes to cool slightly. Then pour into the glass or ramekin.
- Refrigerate at least 6 hours or overnight. Add garnishes and serve.
Coconut Milk Caramel
2 14 oz cans coconut milk
1 ¾ c. brown sugar (I use dark brown sugar)
1 t. salt
1 t. vanilla extract
½” fresh ginger (optional)
Combine milk, brown sugar, ginger, and salt in a heavy bottomed saucepan. Heat until boiling, stirring occasionally. Cook for 30 minutes at a low boil, until mixture has been reduced by ½. Remove from heat, and add salt and vanilla, and remove ginger. Let cool and store in refrigerator for up to 2 weeks.
1 pint raspberries (can be fresh or frozen)
1 t. lemon juice
1 cup raspberry jam (I use seedless)
1 T. raspberry liquer or cassis
Combine all ingredients in a food processor, and mix until well blended. Taste and adjust sweetness to your liking.
Nestle Florentine Cookies
Recipe from the cookbook “Nestle Classic Recipes”, and their website.
2/3 cup (160 ml) (150 gm) (5.3 oz) unsalted butter
2 cups (480 ml) (160 gm) (5 2/3 oz) quick oats
1 cup (240 ml) (230 gm) (8 oz) granulated sugar
2/3 cup (160 ml) (95 gm) (3⅓ oz) plain (all purpose) flour
1/4 cup (60 ml) dark corn syrup
1/4 cup (60 ml) whole milk
1 tsp (5 ml) vanilla extract
pinch of salt
1½ cups (360 ml) (250 gm) (9 oz) dark or milk chocolate
Preheat oven to moderately hot 375°F (190°C) (gas mark 5). Prepare your baking sheet with silpat or parchment paper.
1. Melt butter in a medium saucepan, then remove from the heat.
2. To the melted butter add oats, sugar, flour, corn syrup, milk, vanilla, and salt. Mix well. Drop a tablespoon full, three inches (75 mm) apart, onto your prepared baking sheet. Flatten slightly with the back of your tablespoon, or use a spatula.
3. Bake in preheated oven for 6-8 minutes, until cookies are golden brown. Cool completely on the baking sheets.
4. While the cookies are cooling melt your chocolate until smooth either in the microwave (1 1/2 minutes), or stovetop (in a double boiler, or a bowl that fits atop a saucepan filled with a bit of water, being sure the water doesn't touch the bottom of the bowl).
5. Peel the cookies from the silpat or parchment and place face down on a wire rack set over a sheet of wax/parchment paper (to keep counters clean).
6. Spread a tablespoon of chocolate on the bottom/flat side of your cookie, sandwiching another (flat end) cookie atop the chocolate.
This recipe will make about 2 1/2 - 3 dozen sandwiched Florentine cookies. You can also choose not to sandwich yours, in which case, drizzle the tops with chocolate (over your wax paper).