Tuesday, April 12, 2011

sunday sweets {lavender panna cotta}

Before I begin, there's a couple of things I should say about this post. First, my sincere apologies for the lack of photos, and for the less than stellar photo of the outcome. The photo above was taken after one or two {or twelve} beers had been consumed. Thus, the blurry, unbalanced example you have before you.

Second, I know I just did a lavender honey ice cream a couple of months ago and you may be tired of lavender desserts from me. However, might I remind you the name of this blog is Lavender & Honey. You're lucky I don't make every dessert post include lavender {because I could totally do that}, I mean I would eat this stuff every day if I could.

Now that those topics are out of the way, I must tell you that this is delicious. On top is a blackberry and blueberry sauce and it paired really nicely with the delicate lavender custard. My only regret about this recipe is that it made six, and there just so happened to be six of us eating them, so no leftovers. BIG MISTAKE, because all I can think about is eating just one more of these.

2 tablespoons cold water
2 teaspoons powdered gelatin
2 cups heavy cream
1 teaspoon dried culinary lavender, or 6 fresh lavender flower heads
2 tablespoons milk
1/4 cup honey, or to taste
Pinch of salt

For the compote:
2 cups mixed blueberries and blackberries {they can be frozen, but maybe add a couple of fresh ones for a garnish}
3 tablespoons water
1/4 cup of sugar
2 teaspoons lemon juice

For the Panna Cotta:
1. Put the water in a small bowl and sprinkle the gelatin over it. Set aside.
2. In a medium saucepan, gently heat 1 cup of cream just until tiny bubbles appear around the edges. Do not boil.
3. Remove the cream from the heat and stir in the lavender. Steep for 5 minutes. Begin tasting the cream. When it is pleasantly flavored with lavender—this could require 1 to 5 minutes of additional steeping—pour the mixture through a fine strainer into a bowl. If you can still see particles of lavender in the cream, rinse the strainer and strain the mixture again.
4. Return the cream to the stove. Stir in the other cup of cream and 2 tablespoons of milk, and gently warm the mixture over medium low heat. When bubbles appear around the edges, stir in the honey and salt until they dissolve. Taste for sweetness--you can add a little more honey if you like. Remove from the heat and stir in the gelatin mixture until it dissolves.
5. Pour the mixture into six ramekins, or a large muffin pan. Chill in the refrigerator for at least two hours {preferably four hours}.

For the Compote:
Combine all ingredients into a small saucepan. Cook on medium heat for about 10 minutes, or until they reduce and thicken. Remove from heat, strain, and serve warm.


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