The theme for a recent Gourmet Dinner Club (GDC) was ‘March Madness.’ I interpreted this as needing to have a surprise ingredient. So I was excited when I came across this recipe.
Traditional Italian panna cotta is made with a combination of heavy cream, light cream and/or milk along with gelatin and sugar. This recipe calls for not one but two surprise ingredients: yogurt (in place of the light cream or milk) and extra-virgin olive oil.
I recommend making this at least a day in advance (it can even be made two days in advance) so that the different flavors can marry. Flavors include sweet (sugar and vanilla), a bit of sour (yogurt), fruity (extra-virgin olive oil) and tart (marmalade). When I first tasted the finished product, the extra-virgin olive oil was the strongest but as it sat the flavors came together and the result was a creamy and flavorful dessert.
I used small (8-ounce) Mason jars for this dessert so that I could easily take them to our GDC dinner. If you’re not traveling, you can use 6-ounce ramekins.
While I topped this with orange-tangerine marmalade and pistachios, you could use any kind of jam-nut combination or fresh summer berries.
Gluten-Free/Wheat-Free Option: If you’re gluten-free/wheat-free, I’d recommend looking for an unflavored gelatin that is marked as such. While Knox is likely safe, it’s not labeled gluten-free.
|Yogurt Panna Cotta|| |
- One ¼-ounce envelope unflavored gelatin
- 1-1/2 cups heavy cream
- 1 vanilla bean, split lengthwise and seeds scraped
- ½ cup sugar
- ⅓ cup flavorful extra-virgin olive oil
- 2 cups plain whole-milk Greek yogurt
- 4 tablespoons orange marmalade
- ⅓ cup shelled unsalted pistachios, coarsely chopped
- Flaky sea salt (such as Maldon)
- In a small bowl, sprinkle gelatin over ¼ cup cold water – let stand until softened, about 5 minutes.
- While gelatin is softening, in a small saucepan, bring cream and vanilla bean and seeds to a simmer. Cook over moderately low heat for 3 minutes. Remove pan from heat and whisk in gelatin mixture.
- In a medium bowl, whisk sugar with olive oil until combined. Whisk in yogurt until smooth.
- Remove vanilla bean from vanilla cream mixture. Gradually whisk vanilla cream into the yogurt mixture.
- Pour mixture into six 6-ounce ramekins (or 8-ounce Mason jars) and refrigerate until set, at least 3 hours and up to 2 days.
- Before serving, divide marmalade and pistachios between each panna cotta. Sprinkle with sea salt.
* Any kind of good quality marmalade will work – I’ve used an orange-tangerine marmalade.
Source: Variation on recipe from Food & Wine