Summertime is panna cotta time! A panna cotta (Italian for ‘cooked cream’) is a great dessert for hot days, as it’s light, does not melt (like chocolate does), and feels cool without weighing your tummy down. It can even substitute for a full meal as it’s a fairly strong dish.
- 3 cups of heavy cream (‘double cream’ for Limeys) or mascarpone
- 1/3 cup fine sugar
- 35ml milk
- 2 teaspoonfuls of vanilla extract, ideally alcoholic
- 1 tablespoon or 2 normal sheets of gelatin (be sure to get one you trust, bad gelatin is worse than no gelatin!)
- Frozen fruit (raspberries, blueberries and forest fruits are generally the best) – alternatively, simply keep the fruit in the fridge for 3-4 hours
- Finely grated lemon peel (the real thing, not freeze-dried crap)
- Add the milk to the saucepan and gently warm. Dissolve the mascarpone or cream in the saucepan, using a whisk if needed.
- Add the vanilla extract.
- In a separate saucepan, warm up 25-30ml water and dissolve the gelatin.
- Pour gelatin into the milk/cream mixture and gently dissolve.
- Divide among 6-8 ramekin dishes or small Kilner jars.
- Drop in the cold fruits.
- Sprinkle lemon peel over the mixture.
- Put into fridge, covering it either only very gently with a paper towel or not at all.
- Leave to cool for 3-4 hours. Enjoy cold, with a root beer or as a treat on a hot summer day.