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Sunday, March 28, 2010

Pandan Coconut Panna Cotta

Pandan Panna



The first time I made Panna Cotta was almost 8 years ago when I was staying in China. The 2 little girls of our Mexican business partner was in Singapore for a short holiday and during one of our trips to Holland Village, we had tasted a Pandan Panna Cotta at fine food store, Bunalun. It was so delicious, the girls absolutely loved it. It was then, that I started to experiment on my own to come up with a Pandan Coconut flavoured Panna Cotta that had become a 'star' treat among my friends. Come to think of it, I have never made a plain or traditional Panna Cotta, ever... possibly because I am not really a big dairy fan.Panna Cotta, literally means 'cooked cream' in Italian where it originated, requires a generous portion of cream and milk to be cooked and set with gelatine.

I have not made this dessert for quite a while now and am suddenly reminded of it after I attended the Fabulous Fruit Desserts baking class yesterday at Shermay's Cooking School. The very talented Joycelyn Shu was conducting the demo class and for those who are interested, you can find her beautiful creations at her fabulous blog Kuidaore - hers was the first food blog I got to know about 3 years back and possibly the only food blog I visited for a couple of years before I started doing my own last year. I loved going to Joycelyn's blog for her prose, she writes so well, it is pure literature. Her photos and creations are even more amazing. However, she does not blog as often now, she almost only posts nowadays to give a peek at what she would be doing for classes - but the photos are still as stunning as ever.

During yesterday's class, one of the featured recipe was a Orange & Honey Panna Cotta. A recipe that is zested with orange and sweetened with honey, she had deliberately designed it set to the softest pudding. As a result of which, this is the most creamy Panna Cotta I have ever tasted. Inspired by the texture, I immediately wanted to apply it to my Pandan Coconut Panna Cotta. I took to sweeten the dessert with a very mild honey (clover) instead of sugar and replacing part of the cream and milk with coconut cream. I had wanted to add a dash of chic-ness to it by accompanying it with something refreshing to cut through/balance the heaviness of the cream. I thought of making a Lemon Grass Syrup but felt too lazy to go through all the works. In the end I topped it with some fresh coconut juice and young coconut meat. Not the most chic approach, I must say, because the watery topping, I feel makes the whole presentation look rather sloppy. A more syrupy consistency would probably work better.

One more tip to share - I always serve my Panna Cotta in small shot glasses. The rich, creamy dessert will have you swooning at the first 2 mouthfuls but I, for one, will never be able to work through a bigger serving. You would want to have your guest enjoy the dessert till the last mouthful and  leave them longing for more. When things are left unfinished, the drab sets in....

P.S. : I've had the most disappointing photo shoots today. Everything turned out really under exposed.... After filtering and editing, these are the ones I manage to salvage... :(

Pandan Panna(100)
Recipe :

150g            Whipping cream
32 g             Clover honey
Salt              Pinch
3/4tsp          Gelatine powder
120g            Coconut milk
2                  Pandan Leaves
6 drops        Green Pandan Paste
1                  Young coconut

Method :

1. Heat the cream , honey, pandan leaves and salt in a saucepan over low heat. Stir to dissolve honey. Once honey is dissolved, remove saucepan from heat and let the pandan leaves steep in the cream for 15 mins.

2. Over a Bain Marie, dissolve gelatine in coconut milk.
3. Remove pandan leaves from (1) and add (2). Add Pandan Paste (essence) until well combined. Sieve the cream mixture to remove any undissolved particles.
4. Pour into molds/ shot glasses and chill until set.
5. Top with coconut juice and coconut flesh. Serve immediately.


Quinn said...

I like this! Though I'm the opposite of your for I'm a big dairy fan, I wouldn't mind a pandan coconut panna cotta. I like going all natural but being here in Australia, it doesn't help because I cannot get fresh pandan leaves. The last time I blended frozen pandan leaves, it gives an ugly greyish green colour that puts me off. So as much as I like all natural, if it's ugly, I'd stick to pandan paste. So, yeah, I love the simplicity of this recipe and will make them, thank you so much for sharing Shirley!

Trissa said...

You are so lucky to have attended Joycelyn's class! I was also a big fan of her blog (but honestly, there was a time it was just too much promotion of her classes....) I don't know what you're talking about though as the pics look good to me!

Angie's Recipes said...

They look so pretty and refreshing! I am not a fan of cocktails as I usually got drunk soon after I drank a couple of them.

MaryMoh said...

This looks refreshing and delicious. I love young coconuts.

Ju (The Little Teochew) said...

Beautiful, elegant dessert! I guess I'd have to sub the gelatine with agar agar powder (for a vegetarian version)? You're really good - taking time to go for classes!

Shirley @ Kokken69 said...

Hi Ju,yes,you can substitute with agar agar powder but texture will be quite different. Going for classes is a treat and a hobby. They get quite expensive so I have to be selective too...

Kitchen Corner said...

This is my first time know about pandan flavor one. That's really special!

thecoffeesnob said...

I'm not a fan of panna cotta as well but it sounds so good infused with pandan!

pierre said...

hi shirley I really need to find some pandan and if you like green you will like my recipe on my blog !! Pïerre de Päris

nazarina said...

Mmmmm, This is so airy and light. I am floating away with your panna cotta.Yum!
just bought some screwpine flavored pandan from the web!
Nice to make your acquaintance!

La Table De Nana said...

Your photos are pretty~ And fresh..

I find you can never tell w/ photos..Some days I expect the best because of beautiful light and the food is the wrong color..
White food is difficult.. creamy color too..
It's never easy..
To me there is a bit of luck involved unless we all had a studio w/ the apparatus.
I think we must count ourselves lucky to be able to capture food nevertheless:)Even more eat what we want..Lucky lucky us!

I must I must capture Pandan leaves:)
And I too think this type of dish looks lovely exactly how you served it.

Passionate About Baking said...

Hi Shirley,
This looks truly good! The pandan coconut version sure sounds very asian and good. It's like having pandan chiffon... I love this combination. Thanks for sharing the recipe!

tigerfish said...

I am also not a fan of Panna Cotta but your Pandan take on it is absolutely clever!

Sonia ~ Nasi Lemak Lover said...

This look cool and refreshing !!

Lorraine @ Not Quite Nigella said...

What a beautiful flavour Shirley! I've never thought to do this flavour but now that you've made it it makes perfect sense-like a gorgeous variation of coconut panna cotta :D

petite nyonya said...

This is a great idea..combining Asian flavor into a Western dessert. I love Joycelyn's blog too. She is indeed amazing, as a writer and baker.

Anonymous said...

Oh... how i adore this pannacotta!!! Love how you use the coconut strips. I like the colours!


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