Panna Cota

Had our most wonderful friends over for dinner Saturday night. Had a very simple dinner thanks to Renee and Steve, they always want us to make the least amount of fuss. Renee made an amazing salad. Jim and I did a country mashed potato, grilled asparagus, and pork tenderloin.  Made Panna Cota with berries and a splash of Himbeersauce for dessert. Panna Cota is one of my favorite desserts. You just take a little spoonful and place it in your mouth, move it around a little with you tongue, and let it slide down your throat. Taste’s fantastic and very sensual!  I find the Germanic sauce keeps me grounded so I’m less apt to enjoy the dessert too much in front of company!


Author: Laura S. Kirkley

Panna Cota literally translates as “cooked cream” in Italian. The softly set and creamy Italian puddings are so silky-smooth they slip down beautifully at the end of a meal.

Panna Cotta are also perfect for dinner parties because they can be made a day or two in advance and kept refrigerated until ready to serve.

Any assortment of fresh, seasonal fruit may be served with Panna Cotta, but berries are especially nice. To use ripe, soft fruits, such a cherries, peaches, or apricots, just remove the stones and peals as necessary and cut them into thin slices or bite-size pieces. A splash of aged Balsamic Vinegar is also a stunning combination.

Serves: 8

Panna Cotta


1 Envelope, unflavored gelatin (approximately 2 teaspoons)
1/2 cup, milk
2 1/2 cups, heavy cream
1/2 cup, sugar
1 tablespoon, vanilla extract
1 cup, fresh berries –
Black Berries, Raspberries, Blueberries (optional)
8 Sprigs, Mint – (optional)
splash, Himbeersauce – German Raspberry Sauce (optional)


  1. In a small bowl, sprinkle the gelatin over 1/2 cup milk, let stand until the gelatin is softened, about 5 minutes.
  2. In a large saucepan, combine heavy cream, vanilla, and sugar. Bring cream just to a simmer (do not let it boil), whisking occasionally until sugar has completely dissolved; remove from heat.
  3. Add the softened gelatin mixture and whisk to completely dissolve the gelatin.
  4. Strain hot cream mixture into a large glass measuring cup with a pour spout, pour into ramekins or custard cups. Do not skip the straining step as it removes any bits of undissolved gelatin and insures a nice smooth dessert.
  5. Refrigerate for at least 3 hours to overnight.
  6. To unmold and serve, carefully dip bottom of each ramekin in a baking pan of hot water briefly. Run a thin knife around the edge of each ramekin to loosen it from the inside of the bowl. Wipe the outside of the mold dry and place in individual chilled serving plate (top side down). Invert the custard into the plate and carefully lift off ramekin (shake gently to release).
  7. Or do as I do. I serve in the ramekin on a small plate, garnish with 3 or 5 raspberries, Himbeersauce, and a splash of mint that starts in the ramekin, swirls over the side and finishes with a one or two inch green accent on the small plate below.


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