We’re having some old friends over for dinner tomorrow. We haven’t seen them in a while so I’m really looking forward to it. For the dinner, I thought I would keep it simple so I’m making a slow-roasted beef brisket with mushroom gravy, roasted potatoes, and steamed broccoli. But for dessert, I wanted to serve something that would be easy to prepare and yet be fancy enough to make a statement. I decided to make Panna Cotta but didn’t feel like doing the traditional vanilla flavor. Then I thought, ‘how about coffee flavored?’ It would jazz up the custard quite nicely and make it sophisticated enough to appeal to the grown-up palate. If I could come up with some kind of sauce to serve it with, that would be the icing on the cake!….. or the icing on the cotta….. LOL! I must say, I think it turned out pretty well! I hope my friends, Maureen and Bullet, like it too.
COFFEE PANNA COTTA
- 1 packet Knox unflavored gelatin
- ¼ cup cold water
- 3 cups whipping cream
- ½ cup sugar
- 1½ tsp. instant espresso or coffee granules
- ½ tsp. vanilla extract
- In a small bowl, soften gelatin in cold water; set aside.
- Place whipping cream, sugar, instant coffee and vanilla extract in a saucepan.
- Stir over medium heat until mixture comes to a simmer.
- Simmer gently for 5 minutes.
- Remove from heat and add gelatin to hot cream mixture, stirring until gelatin dissolves.
- Pour into 6 lightly oiled 1/2 cup ramekins or other small containers and refrigerate overnight or at least 8 hours.
- Once panna cottas are firm, turn out onto dessert plates.
- Decorate with chocolate covered espresso beans and mint leaves.
- If desired, serve with Coffee Cream Sauce.