Today, The Taste-Buds blog blows its first candle. I seriously cannot believe a year has passed since that first post.
A lot has happened in the meantime too and it all brought me closer to my co-bloggers and friends. After all I got to meet one in person, since Clint got to visit me last summer and you can read all about it here and here.
A special occasion calls for a special recipe, don’t you agree? I have been meaning to make Panna Cotta for a while now. I have made it a couple of days ago actually, but decided to leave the actual posting for the blog-anniversary.
I adapted a recipe given by a chef in a local restaurant called Muse and that I clipped out from a local magazine.
The flavor in the original recipe was strawberry and I wanted to go for chocolate (after all what can make anything even more special if it is not chocolate?), so I had to get creative where the accompanying sauce was concerned. Without further ado, here is the final result:
Chocolate and Mandarin Liqueur Panna Cotta
- 1/8 cup of cold water
- 2 tsp gelatin powder
- 2 cups crème fraîche
- ¼ cup sugar (recipe called for ½ a cup, but I don’t like things to be too sweet)
- 1 – 2 Tbsp mandarin Liqueur (I used homemade)
- 1/8 tsp vanilla essence (you can use a pod)
- 70 g dark chocolate (I used dark Côte d’Or)
- Chocolate Sauce (recipe follows)
For the chocolate sauce:
- 50 g dark Lindt Chocolate 85% + about 17 g milk chocolate (I used Galaxy – about half a bar)
- 1 cup milk
- 1 ½ Tbsp sugar
In a cup, soak the gelatin in the cold water for 10 minutes. In a pot, add the crème fraîche, the vanilla, the chocolate (broken to chunks), the sugar and the liqueur and bring to a simmer.
Off fire add the gelatin, if need be put some of the hot mixture on top of the gelatin to dissolve, then add all to the mixture.
Divide in 5 small ramekins and leave them to cool. Put them in the fridge and allow them to set (about 4-5 hours).
To serve soak each ramekin in hot water for about 20 seconds. If need be pass a knife around it to release it.
Turn it over on the serving plate and add the chocolate sauce. Sometimes you need to wait for it a few seconds before it is released. Be patient.
The Sauce Preparation:
In a small pot, add the milk and the chocolate (broken to chunks) over low heat. Bring to a boil and lower the heat to a minimum to reduce. Stir from time to time to combine. When thick enough (it should be creamy) take off heat and stir in the liqueur and the sugar. Let it cool.
I did not take any pictures of the sauce preparation (insert red face here).
In the end I want to wish my Taste-Buds a happy Blog-anniversary and tell them: “it has been a pleasure to share this experience with you”.