Blood Orange Panna Cotta with Chocolate
The blood orange is a hybrid of ancient Sicilian origin, possibly between the pomelo and the tangerine. The three most common types of blood oranges are: the Tarocco (native to Italy), the Sanguinello (native to Spain), and the Moro, the newest variety of the three. The distinctive dark flesh color is due to the presence of anthocyanin, a pigment common to many flowers and fruit, but uncommon in citrus fruits. Blood oranges are juicy, sweet and slightly less acidic than regular table oranges. Their most common uses are not “out of hand” eating but in salads, desserts and specialty drinks. This recipe, Panna Cotta with Blood Oranges, combines oranges with chocolate, one of oranges most natural flavor pairings. Enjoy!
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- 3 cups Heavy Cream
- 1 cup Fresh Squeezed Blood Orange Juice
- 3 Tbsp. Granulated Sugar
- 1 Tbsp. Unflavored Gelatin
- 2 Tbsp. Fresh Orange Peels
- 1/2 Vanilla Bean, split
- 12 Blood Orange Segments, fresh
- Chocolate Shavings, to garnish
- Sprinkle gelatin over 3 tbsp. of the orange juice and let it stand for about 10 minutes without stirring. This is to soften the gelatin.
- In a saucepan, add cream, sugar, vanilla bean, orange peel and the rest of the orange juice.
- Cook on medium heat, stirring constantly to dissolve the sugar. Taste and add more sugar if needed.
- When the cream is heated through and starts simmering, turn off the stove. Add the softened gelatin mixture and stir well to combine. Make sure the gelatin is completely dissolved.
- Pass the cooked cream mixture through a fine sieve to remove the orange peels and the vanilla pods. Pour the mixture into six ramekins or dessert bowls.
- Chill in the refrigerator uncovered for about 3 hours or overnight.
- Before serving, dip the cups in hot water for a few seconds. Pass a thin knife through the edges to separate the Panna Cotta from the cup, and turn the cup on to the dessert plates.
- Garnish with shaved chocolate swirls and orange segments. (Note: if mixture is poured into shallow ramekins, dessert can be left in the dish and garnished accordingly.)
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