Wednesday, February 2, 2011

Go-to recipes

My requirements for a standby recipe: can be prepared in advance, impressive presentation, can be altered with seasonal ingredients/what is on hand.

Panna cotta fits all of those requirements and so is one of my staple dessert recipes. Its an eggless custard - thickened with gelatine - and goes great with fresh fruit, compote or sauce.

The basic recipe is 3 c cream, 1/2 c sugar, and 1.5 t gelatine. I usually make mine with half and half instead of cream, and usually do 2 c of some sort of tangy milk product - yogurt, buttermilk, and goats milk are all good options. For a recent dinner party, I served buttermilk panna cotta with blueberry cabernet sauce. Delicious and so easy!

Buttermilk Panna Cotta
1.5 t gelatine
3 T water
1 c half and half
1/2 c sugar
1T vanilla
2 c buttermilk

Add water and gelatine to a small bowl. Let soften for at least 10 minutes. Gently heat half and half and sugar in a saucepan until sugar is completely dissolved. Remove from heat and stir in vanilla and gelatine. Then stir in buttermilk. Pour into 6-8 prepared ramekins (I use handled soup bowls which work perfectly). Let chill in fridge for at least 4 hours before serving.

Blueberry Cabernet Sauce
In a saucepan bring 1 pint fresh blueberries and 1/2 cup cabernet sauvignon to a boil, stirring constantly. Let cool before serving.


  1. You know this is your dad's favorite dessert! Reminds me to make this for him for Valentine's Day! Thanks for the recipe and the great photos!
    love you,