Friday, April 19, 2013

Raspberry Panna Cotta


It's reminiscent of a delicate raspberry ice cream, but not as cold.

In addition to cream, this panna cotta is made with yogurt- which adds a nice little tang.
It's not an overly rich dessert, and another really nice characteristic is that since the yogurt itself isn't cooked it retains most, if not all, of it's cultures.

The texture is great, with just enough gelatin to hold it together, not overly firm by any means.

I guess the one pain involved is straining out the raspberry seeds. If the strainer is very fine, the job can take forever (and personally, I don't mind a few stray seeds finding their way in here and there... at least  people will get the idea you used real raspberries, right?).

If you want to amplify the raspberry flavor, you can certainly serve the panna cottas in a pool of raspberry sauce. But in that case, you risk the delicate raspberry flavor of the crème being overpowered.

Other garnish suggestions:
a little lime or lemon zest on top of each
extra fresh raspberries
white chocolate curls
a bit of crushed meringue on top and around the plate
fresh mint leaves

Raspberry Panna Cotta
makes 8 (6 oz. ramekins)

12 oz (340 g) raspberries
1/2 c (120 ml) whole milk
2 t (8 g) powdered gelatin
2 c (490 g) plain yogurt (full-fat is preferable)
1 t (5 ml) vanilla
1 c (240 ml) heavy cream
2/3 c (130 g) sugar
pinch of salt

Place the raspberries in a blender with the whole milk. Blend until the berries are completely broken down. Strain the mixture into a large bowl through a mesh strainer (or non-mesh/not-so-fine strainer lined with a couple layers of cheesecloth) to remove the raspberry seeds. 
Remove about 1/4 c (60 ml) of the raspberry mixture to a small bowl. Sprinkle the gelatin over the top, stir to incorporate, and set aside to soften.

Whisk the yogurt and vanilla into the (non-gelatin) raspberry mixture and set the bowl aside. 

In a small saucepan, heat the cream, sugar, and salt. Stir occasionally and continue heating until the cream simmers and the sugar has dissolved. Whisk the softened gelatin into the hot cream, making sure the gelatin is fully incorporated.
Pour the cream mixture into the yogurt mixture and whisk everything together until well-combined.

Ladle the liquid panna cotta into 8 ramekins or custard cups. Cover with plastic wrap and refrigerate at least 8 hours. 

The desserts can be served either in the dishes, or unmoulded onto a plate. 

If unmoulding, have a bowl of hot water prepared when you're ready to serve. 
Dip a ramekin into the hot water so that that water comes up the side of the ramekin (but don't drop it into the water). Hold it there a few seconds so that the dish and the outside of the panna cotta heats up and melts a bit.  Pull the ramekin out of the water, dry the outside, and place a small plate face down on top of the ramekin. Invert the plate and ramekin together, hold everything together tightly, and give a few good shakes. The panna cotta should fall out of the dish and onto the plate (you should be able to feel and hear it). 
Remove the ramekin from the plate and repeat with the remaining dishes. 

Garnish as desired and serve. 


  1. I think it would still hold together great with a bit less gelatin. Next time I think I'll try it with maybe 2 t to see what kind of a difference that makes.
    Two days after making it, the panna cotta is still good (flavor, texture and all). I don't know that I would plan to make it more than two days ahead though.

  2. Two points:

    The recipe works great with less gelatin- and I've reduced it in the recipe to reflect that.

    If for some reason you want (or need) to substitute cream for some of the yogurt, no problem. I only had half the yogurt (1 cup) and used double the cream (2 cups). In that instance, half of the cream is stirred into the yogurt, and the other half is still heated with the sugar as in the original recipe.