Happy Early Valentine’s Day to all of you. I know, it’s not Valentine’s Day until Friday, February 14th. But this year’s Valentine’s day is more special because the Chinese Valentine’s Day (January 15th on the Luna Calendar), also falls on February 14th (the Western Valentine’s Day as we all know). Sounds a little confusing? Never minded. Let’s just look at that as another
I don’t know why but I think strawberries are very romantic and always associate them with Valentine’s Day. Maybe because of their vibrate red color, and the lovely pink hue that they yield when mixing them into desserts? I simply adore the beauty of strawberries, and my kids always agree.
This Valentine’s Day, let me present to you this decadent Strawberry Panna Cotta with Macerated Strawberry. The panna cotta is slightly sweet, tender, smooth and has the melt in the mouth texture. The Macerated Strawberry is sweet and tart at the same time, the strawberries are slightly softened but still remain a good bite to them. In this case, a perfect pair with the panna cotta. I serve the Panna Cotta with a couple of Vanilla Bean Sweetheart French Macarons on the side for a different texture. Traditionally, Panna Cotta is inverted onto a dessert plate before serving, just like the one shown on the picture below. But, I also love to serve them in individual tea cups, which make them a little more adorable and easier for my kids to handle.
In case you like to serve them the traditional way, here’s a little pictorial to show you how.
1) First, place the chilled panna cotta in a bowl of hot water for a few seconds.
2) Wipe the bottom of the ramekin with a paper towel so the condensation doesn't go into your dessert.
3) Cover the ramekin with the dessert plate you intended to serve the panna cotta on.
4) Carefully invert the plate along with the ramekin. Keep your fingers crossed! Remove the ramekin and spoon on the macerated strawberries.
P.S. If the panna cotta doesn't fall onto your dessert plate easily, dip the ramekin in the hot water for a few more seconds and repeat the steps. The length of time needed depends on the temperature of your water. The hotter the water, the less time is needed.
This is such a simple dessert to make, but it got the “Wow” factor. I hope you’ll give this a try and I’m sure the sweethearts in your lives will love it just as much as mine. At least, my two little Valentines are totally in love with this dessert.
I hope you enjoy today’s post and recipe. And remember, we shouldn't just celebrate with our loved ones only on Valentine’s Day (although it’s always nice to do something special on this day). You can make everyday special and lovely when you show your love; with a warm hug, a gentle kiss, or softly whisper “I love you” to those who you care about. It could be Valentine’s Day all year round.
Strawberry Panna Cotta with Macerated Strawberry: (Printable Recipe)
Ingredients for the Panna Cotta:
1 tablespoon unflavored gelatin
1 1/4 cup low fat milk, divided
1 pound fresh strawberries
6 tablespoons sugar
1 cup heavy cream
1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
1 teaspoon lemon juice
In a heat proof bowl, dissolve gelatin and 1/4 cup milk, set aside and let it rest for 5 minutes.
In the blender, process strawberries, remaining 1 cup of milk, heavy cream, sugar, vanilla extract and lemon juice until smooth. Pour through a fine sieve into a large bowl, discard any solids.
Heat the gelatin mixture in the microwave for 30 seconds until liquid-fied.
Whisk the gelatin mixture into strawberry puree until well combined. Evenly pour into molds or serving cups.
Chill for at least 8 hours, or preferable overnight.
To unmold, dip molds in a small bowl of hot water 5 to 10 seconds, then invert panna cottas onto dessert plates and remove molds. Serve with macerated strawberries.
Ingredients for the Macerated Strawberry:
1/2 pound fresh strawberries, sliced
Juice from 1/2 a lemon
1 tablespoon of sugar (I used vanilla sugar)
In a medium bowl, gently toss strawberry slices with lemon juice and sugar. Let mixture steep in room temperature for 15 minutes.