Panna Cotta is a chilled, softly gelled, silky smooth, creamy, melt-in-your-mouth Italian dessert that translates as “cooked cream.” I mentally put it in the pudding and flan category because of its creamy, set quality, but unlike most flans and puddings, it usually contains no eggs (for an interesting exception to this see The Sweet Life: Desserts from Chanterelles by Kate Zuckerman). In consistency, it is somewhere between a flan and lightest possible gelatin. When set, it can be unmolded, in which case it will shimmy seductively on the plate. It’s a little bit of heavenly cool on a spoon.
Typically, Panna Cotta is made by melting softened gelatin in hot liquid, combining with a sweetened dairy product, pouring into molds, and finally chilling to...
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