Basic coconut milk panna cotta with ginger
As you may have seen on Monday, I had a lot of fun putting together an NYE party shoot with some friends earlier this month. Inspired by the most successful recent New Year's Eves in our lives (spent at home or at friends' places with good food, a few friends, and games or other fun, relaxed activities), we did a games night theme, and each of us contributed to the decor and recipes. (Check out Jenni's main post and printables here and Kelsey's main post here.)
My recipe to share is one of my favorite light, refreshing desserts, with a festive twist. This is a basic coconut milk [dairy-free version of classic] panna cotta, which I served with candied ginger!
I had never made panna cotta until last year, when I found a Paleo version on a real food recipe blog. I'm not sure I even knew what it was until I put it together after that. Panna cotta is an Italian dessert traditionally made with cream, egg white or plain gelatin, and honey. Well, turns out it is delicious made with coconut milk instead!
I am not the first person to discover this, obviously. I've made this dish a few times, with some variations, but typically stick pretty closely to this recipe from Deliciously Organic or this recipe on The Detoxinista (smaller batch).
Basic coconut milk panna cotta - with candied ginger
- 1 can full-fat coconut milk
- 2 tbsp honey (or other sweetener like coconut palm sugar, although it may change the color)
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 1¼ tsp unflavored gelatin (this brand is from grassfed cows)
- 5-6 pieces candied ginger
- Refer to original instructions by Deliciously Organic or this recipe on The Detoxinista. (I don't want want to steal their thunder for such great recipes!)
- Once panna cottas are chilled and plated (or served in dishes, as I did), chop 1-2 pieces of candied ginger into small pieces and sprinkle on top of each.
- Fold remaining 4 pieces of ginger and hook on edge of cups (or serve on plates).
Makes 4 servings.
Serve cool. These are so good, and not too heavy so perfect after a big, fun dinner!
Definitely husband's favorite part of our photo shoot he so patiently posed in.
Other great variations:
Like I said, I've made variations on this recipe before! And I've tried others (like this chai tea vanilla panna cotta) and this fancy strawberry balsamic compote topping version). Once you get the hang of working with gelatin (this stuff is great) you'll feel comfortable making panna cottas all the time! I seriously wouldn't mind one right now. Plus, gelatin (especially from grassfed cows) is incredibly healthy and great for skin, joints, hair, just for starters. Plus it has a notable amount of protein, and the coconut milk in these recipes has healthy fats! It's really more of a health food than a dessert, right?? (Kidding. But you could do much worse.)
- Melt dark chocolate into the panna cotta while heating; serve with toasted hazlenuts
- Add cinnamon to the panna cotta; top with shaved dark chocolate
- Lemon juice and/or zest in the panna cotta; serve with fresh blackberries or homemade blackberry sauce
- Lime juice and/or zest in the panna cotta; serve with flaked coconut
- Homemade strawberry sauce (made with honey) would be the perfect topping for this basic recipe!
Gorgeous photos by Mary Boyden.