Vanilla panna cotta with balsamic berries

Vanilla panna cotta with balsamic berries

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Desserts
Serves
6-8

Panna cotta simply translates as ‘cooked cream’. However, this recipe is very light and delicate due to the gelatine. You must be careful with the amount of gelatine you put in – just enough to hold it firm; use too much and you will end up with a dessert you can bounce off the walls. The addition of balsamic berries adds a lovely sharpness which goes well with the creaminess of the panna cotta.

Ingredients

Quantity Ingredient
4 leaves gelatine
120ml milk
2 oranges, zested
2 vanilla pods, split
150g caster sugar
1.2 litres double cream
80ml vodka

For the balsamic berries:

Quantity Ingredient
200g strawberries, hulled
150g raspberries
100g blueberries
75ml good-quality aged balsamic vinegar
25g caster sugar

Method

  1. Soak the gelatine in the milk and leave to one side.
  2. Place the orange zest, vanilla pods and caster sugar in a pan. Add 800ml of the cream and bring to the boil. Simmer until the mixture is reduced by a third.
  3. While the cream is reducing, remove the gelatine from the milk and place the milk in a pan to warm gently. When it is warm, add the soaked gelatine and stir to dissolve. Add to the warm cream and pass through a sieve and leave to cool.
  4. Lightly whip the remaining cream and fold into the setting mixture, together with the vodka. Pour the mixture into 6–8 dariole moulds, ramekins or similar sized moulds and place in the fridge to set.
  5. While the panna cotta is setting, make the balsamic berries. Place the strawberries, raspberries, blueberries, balsamic vinegar and sugar into a large bowl and toss together. Allow to marinate for 2–3 hours, tossing occasionally.
  6. Remove the panna cotta from the fridge and slide a knife around the edge to loosen. Alternatively, dip the moulds very briefly in hot water to loosen the panna cotta. Tip them out into the middle of the plates and spoon the balsamic berries around the edge.
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