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Tuesday, September 22, 2009

Odds & Ends Ingredients = Yogurt Panna Cotta Topped with Balsamic Blackberries

sometimes i just like to throw things together in the hopes that something good will come of it. most of the time it leaves me with odds and ends in the fridge, barely enough for a proper dish but too wasteful to throw out. i should've been a scientist, except i failed biology and chemistry in college, and i barely passed with the lowest level science (environmental science 101) for my general ed credits (D+, thanks). as a result, i'm constantly faced with the dilemma of what to make out of scraps. some time ago i had small portions of sour cream and yogurt and lord have mercy, some almost-rotting-but-not-quite-yet blackberries. i had made oven baked red snapper (with potatoes, olives, and fennel) for dinner and i needed a simple but delightful dessert. in walks panna cotta. simple enough, i've made it before to good results and really, the perfect way to use up scraps.

the only thing i can complain about is that i didn't wait long enough for the panna cotta to set. it was hard to get out of the ramekin but when it finally did (with the assistance of hot water, a knife along the edge and alot of coaxing & cussing), topped with the cooled berries that had simmered in balsamic vinegar, the combination was ...melting. weird description, i know but that's exactly what it did on my tongue. it was soft, almost sweet but not like i was snorting sugar and that added tang of the blackberries at the end was just what i needed.


Yogurt Panna Cotta topped with Blackberry Balsamic Sauce
Panna Cotta adapted from Sugar Plum

2 tablespoons cold water
1 1/2 teaspoons gelatin
1/2 cup plain yogurt
1/4 cup milk
1/3 cup granulated sugar (i measured just shy of 1/3 cup)
2/3 cup sour cream
1 teaspoon vanilla extract

Pour 2 tablespoons cold water in a large mixing bowl. Sprinkle gelatin over water, stir until dissolved, set aside for a minute.

Whisk together milk and sugar, in a large saucepan over medium heat. When mixture is hot, but not boiling, whisk mixture into gelatin, until well combined. Whisk in sour cream, yogurt and vanilla. Divide mixture into 4 ramekins. Cover and chill in the refrigerator for 3 hours, or until ready to serve.

Dip the bottoms of ramekins in hot water. Run a knife around ramekin edges, and invert panna cotta onto serving plates. Drizzle with blackberry balsamic sauce, which is just some overripe blackberries and 1 tablespoon of balsamic vinegar brought to a slow simmer in a saucepan until reduced.


Today's song: Barcelona, Please Don't Go


  1. Well, I'm back to blogging and commenting after a long vacation and what a delight to be greeted with this *beau*tiful thing. Great-looking dessert and great photography.

  2. Seriously great photo. I love balsamic vinegar paired with berries (and beets!). You wouldn't think vinegar makes a good dessert addition, but it really does!

  3. Tracy, thank you! it really was yum. :)

    Leela, welcome back! thank you. :)

    Aliza, you are too kind. i am fast becoming a fan of balsamic vinegar paired with berries and beets! (i have two beets in the fridge and was thinking of roasting them and drizzing in BV over it... hmmm) it is such a surprise that BV makes for such a great accompaniament in deserts. a little known secret of sorts! :)

  4. Mel - trust me, this is so easy to make, you can whip this up in no time!