Saturday, May 22, 2010
Strawberry Panna Cotta - Pink Saturday
From the kitchen of One Perfect Bite...While local strawberries aren't ready to harvest, those in the supermarkets no longer taste like cardboard and can be used to make some passable desserts. Several years ago, I discovered fruit extracts that can be used to heighten the flavor of less than prime fruit. While I wouldn't use the berries that are currently available for short cake or a glacéd tart, they work perfectly well in desserts such as panna cotta, especially when given the flavor boosts a pure fruit extract can provide. I must admit that those of us who live in Oregon are spoiled by the quality of fruit that is available to us. While markets glorify huge strawberries, most folks never get to taste the small field berries that are available to us in season. Pure ambrosia! I like this version of panna cotta because it's made with buttermilk rather than heavy cream and it has a slight tang that makes it a pleasant way to end a meal. Panna cotta is one of the easiest of all desserts to make, but it needs time, a lot of time, to properly chill. Whenever possible, I make mine the night before I plan to serve it. While most recipes suggest than eight hours is a sufficient time for the gelatin to set, I've found twelve hours to be ideal. Once made, they can be kept for up to 2 days in the refrigerator. I like to serve these with macerated berries or a fruit compote to keep the dessert light. Here's the recipe.
Strawberry Panna Cotta...from the kitchen of One Perfect Bite, inspired by Gourmet magazine
3 cups sliced strawberries (1 pound)
1-3/4 cups well-shaken low-fat buttermilk
6 tablespoons sugar
2-1/2 teaspoons unflavored gelatin, from less than 2 (1/4-oz) envelopes
1/4 cup whole milk
1/4 cup heavy cream
Optional: 1 teaspoon strawberry extract
2-1/2 cups strawberries (preferably small; 3/4 lb), trimmed
1/4 cup fresh orange juice
2 teaspoons superfine granulated sugar
1) To make panna cotta: Blend strawberries, buttermilk, and sugar in a blender until very smooth, then pour through a very fine sieve into a medium bowl, pressing hard on solids. Discard solids. Sprinkle gelatin over milk in a small bowl and let stand 1 minute to soften. Bring cream to a boil in a small saucepan. Remove from heat and add gelatin mixture, stirring until dissolved. Whisk cream mixture into strawberry purée and pour into 6 (6-oz.) molds. Chill molds, covered, until firm, at least 8 hours. To unmold, dip molds in a small bowl of hot water 2 or 3 seconds, then invert panna cottas onto dessert plates and remove molds. Let stand at room temperature 20 minutes to soften slightly.
2) To make fruit compote: Halve strawberries lengthwise if small or quarter if larger. Whisk together orange juice and superfine sugar in a bowl until sugar is dissolved and add strawberries, tossing to coat. Serve panna cottas with compote.
You might also enjoy these recipes:
Pumpkin Panna Cotta - One Perfect Bite
Lemon Panna Cotta with Raspberry-Orange Sauce - The Recipe Girl
Toasted Almond Panna Cotta - Cooking for Seven
This post is being linked to:
Pink Saturday, sponsored by Beverly at How Sweet the Sound.