Saturday, November 21, 2009

Ginger Panna Cotta with Cranberry-Blood Orange Sauce

Why have cranberries as your dinner side when you can dress them up a little bit for a fun and spicy dessert? Evaporated milk, lite cream and yogurt lighten up this creamy Italian classic while maintaining the rich flavor that makes panna cotta so irresistible.

For Panna Cotta:
1 1/2 cups evaporated milk
1/2 cup lite cream
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
2 teaspoons unflavored gelatin
1/3 cup sugar
1 cup lowfat Greek vanilla yogurt
1 teaspoon grated ginger, juice reserved

Mix milk (minus 1 tablespoon that you need to save) and cream in saucepan. Add grated ginger. Bring to simmer. Remove from heat. Cover; let steep (cover) 30 minutes. Strain to remove ginger.

Sprinkle gelatin over ginger juice/reserved tablespoon milk. Let stand until gelatin softens, about 10 minutes. Stir sugar and gelatin mixture into milk mixture. Stir over low heat until sugar and gelatin dissolves. Remove immediately from heat. Whisk in vanilla yogurt. Divide among ramekins. Cover; chill until set. It typically needs at least 5 hours to set.

For Cranberry-Blood Orange Sauce:

12 oz fresh or unthawed frozen cranberries
1 cup honey or light brown sugar
Juice from 2 blood oranges, about 1 cup

Use a peeler to remove 2 large strips (about 4 inches long) from 1 orange. In a saucepan of boiling water blanch zest 1 minute and drain in a colander. Chop zest very finely and transfer to a bowl.

In a saucepan bring to a boil juice and sugar/honey, stirring to dissolve sugar. Add cranberries, return to a boil. Simmer for 10-25 minutes or until cranberries burst. Taste for sweetness, add extra sweetener if needed.

Remove from heat and stir in chopped zest. Refrigerate until serving.

Run small knife around panna cotta. Place bottoms of ramekins in bowl of hot water briefly to loosen them. Place plate atop ramekin. Hold plate and ramekin together and flip gently to removed panna cotta.

Serve with a generous helping of Cranberry-Blood Orange Sauce


  1. Mmm, I love panna cotta. This recipe sounds like a perfect match -- zesty, zingy, and creamy at the same time.

  2. That's what I am going for, a party for your tongue, lol! But seriously, why does cranberry sauce need to be the same 'ole thing year after it a bad rap : )

  3. Lets hope I can find blood oranges today! I think it would be a great addition to my torte I make each year! Love this, love it...

  4. Thanks! It is a bit healthier than my normal panna cottas, but it's a fun/savory dish : )


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