Vanilla Bean Panna Cotta

Homemade vanilla + pods for panna cotta

Panna Cotta, or “cooked milk” should be on your next kitchen to-do list! It is straightforward, versatile, and simply delicious! Can I just add a little thanks for the Italian language here? I mean, who would even want to try cooked milk? But, Panna Cotta, (with your hand raised with fingers kissing, you know, that typical Italian gesture) just rolls off the tongue, as a luscious confection should. (I’ve successfully used coconut milk for those with milk sensitivity.)

May your bellies be full and your hearts content. With love – v

Vanilla Bean Panna Cotta

  • 3 c milk
  • 1 c heavy cream
  • 1/2 c sugar
  • 1 pkg gelatine
  • 3 T water
  • 1 vanilla bean, split
  • 1/2 tsp vanilla extract, optional
  • pinch of kosher salt

Bring milk, sugar and vanilla pod to a medium-low simmer; stir often. In a small bowl, sprinkle the gelatin over 3 T water. Once it has bloomed (3-5 minutes) whisk into hot milk mixture; add heavy cream and pinch of kosher salt. Remove the vanilla bean, scraping any seeds that remain. Continue to simmer mixture for an additional 3-5 minutes, gently heating cream. Remove from heat; stir in vanilla extract, if using. Pour into dessert glasses, stemless wine glasses, espresso cups or small mason jars. Chill at least 4 hours.

Fruit Topping

  • 2 c diced fruit (strawberry or mango are our favs)
  • 1-4 T sugar (depends on YOUR taste desires!)
  • 1/2 tsp vanilla

Dice fruit, setting aside 1/4 cup. Place remaining fruit and sugar in small saucepan; cook over medium-low heat until fruit starts breaking down; turn heat to low and continue to simmer for 3 minutes. Remove from heat and stir in reserved fruit and vanilla. Cover and chill. For serving, spoon over set panna cotta.

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