I love panna cotta. Just like the crackle of a good creme brûlée, a good panna cotta must possess the dance of the panna cotta. That means, when you jiggle your plate from side to side, this delicate dessert wobbles beautifully on the plate.
Last weekend, I challenged my self to create the dance of the panna cotta at home. Imagine how surprised I was to find out that it’s actually so easy and quick to make this dessert. It was a remarkable feeling. As you probably realised, I don’t make a lot of desserts – most of the recipes that I make at home are savoury. I love desserts but I’m just not good at making them 😦
For my first attempt, I added matcha green tea, which gives a subtle tea-like pungency to this dreamy, luscious and creamy dessert. Being a simple dessert, it is after all a basic cream pudding, and by following the right measurements, it is easy to get all the elements right.
” Firstly, the correct calibration between the gelatine and the dairy enables the panna cotta to set and still be able to dance on the plate when un-mould. Secondly, it must taste creamy and melting in the mouth without lumps. ”
If a dessert-handicap person like me can make this, I’m pretty sure you can too! This is an extremely fool proof recipe. To go with this dessert, I’ve made a simple chocolate soil which adds a bit of crunch and texture. Go ahead and give it a try – it surely makes the most impressive dinner-party finale.
Green Tea Panna Cotta with Chocolate Soil (panna cotta recipe adapted from Tonia George’s Tea Cookbook)
Serves 4 (with 4x 150 ml dariole moulds)
100 ml full cream milk
2 tsp (7 g) powdered gelatine
500 ml double cream
75 g sugar
1 1/2 tbsp matcha green tea powder
125 g almond meal
125 g caster sugar
75 g plain flour
50 g cocoa powder
60 g unsalted butter, melted
pinch of sea salt flakes
1. Chocolate soil can be prepared days before and kept in an airtight container for up to 5 days. Pre-heat oven to 150 celsius. In a large bowl, combine all the dry ingredients (except melted butter) together and mix well. Then stir in the melted butter until the mixture looks mealy. Line a baking tray with baking paper and spread the mixture evenly on the baking tray. Bake for 10 – 15 minutes, stir the mixture occasionally. Cool, then store in an airtight container.
2. To make the panna cotta – gradually mix the green tea powder with 2 tbsp of milk in a small bowl until smooth. Pour the remaining milk into a small heatproof bowl and sprinkle over gelatine. Set aside for 5 mins. Then place the bowl over a saucepan of hot water and continuously stir until gelatine dissolves. Remove and leave to cool.
3. Mix the cream and sugar in another saucepan and heat over low heat until almost boiling. Remove and pour into a jug. Whisk in the green tea powder and then followed by the cooled gelatine solution. Whisk until they are mixed well. Pour the mixture into dariole moulds.
4. Transfer them into the refrigerator and refrigerate for 2 hours or more till set. To check if they are set or not, they should wobble like jelly when you move the mould and that the centre shouldn’t look like there’s still liquid.
5. To remove from the moulds, dip the bases briefly for about 5 secs in hot water. Then gently invert onto serving plates and give short sharp shakes to loosen them. Serve with chocolate soil on the side.