To go along with my fear of baking with yeast is my fear of using gelatin. It's because both are so finicky and if you don't use them properly, you won't find out until it's way too late. I've always wanted to make panna cotta however, and I thought it was time to face my fear. I found this recipe on all recipes and it had really good feedback so it seemed like a safe bet.
I've seen some beautiful presentations for panna cotta especially on tastespotting and foodgawker. I've always loved the look of it with blueberries but you can make these with any berry and any shape. Something about the bright blue of the berries popping against the white really catches my eye. So with wild abandon I mixed up the ingredients, poured the molds and let them chill overnight. If you ask me, that is one of the best things about this dessert, you can make it the night before. I still didn't know what I would find when it was time to serve them but to my absolute joy, they turned out beautifully. Not to mention so delicious. I served these for company and they were such a crowd pleaser. I was surprised that something so pretty and tasty could be so easy to make. I honestly think that these were the easiest desserts I've ever made. But let's just keep that between us.
RECIPE (courtesy of All Recipes)
1/3 Cup skim milk
1 (.25 ounce) envelope unflavored gelatin
2 1/2 Cups heavy cream
1/2 Cup white sugar (I used 1/3)
1 1/2 teaspoons vanilla extract
Pour milk into a small bowl, and stir in the gelatin powder. Set aside. In a saucepan, stir together the heavy cream and sugar, and set over medium heat. Bring to a full boil, watching carefully, as the cream will quickly rise to the top of the pan. Pour the gelatin and milk into the cream, stirring until completely dissolved. Cook for one minute, stirring constantly. Remove from heat, stir in the vanilla and pour into six individual ramekin dishes. Cool the ramekins uncovered at room temperature. When cool, cover with plastic wrap, and refrigerate for at least 4 hours, but preferably overnight before serving.
2 Cups fresh blueberries
zest and juice of 1 orange
1 Cup water
(you can add a touch of sugar if needed however, the Panna Cotta is sweet)
Place all ingredients in a medium saucepan (reserve a few blueberries for serving.) Bring to a boil. Reduce heat to medium and
simmer mixture, stirring often, until the water is absorbed and it thickens into a sauce. Use the back of a wooden spoon or a fork and gently break up the berries. Allow the sauce to cool before serving with the Panna Cotta.