This week I made a special dessert. A panna cotta with a delicate flavour of mint and lots of luscious, delicious dark chocolate sauce. Absolutely divine I must say.
As you might have read from my previous posts, in order to take part on the "Great Oven Ban challenge" last week I ditched my oven and gas stove and only used 6 appliaces for all my cooking. My favourite and most used kitchen appliance was the Severin branded induction hob distribuited by "Homespares" .
What is an induction hob? This cooking method uses electromagnetic energy where the energy goes through the cooktop straight to the iron-based pan, producing or inducing a current which in turn releases heat. This means that the pan you use needs to have a high iron content. Induction hobs are quicker and cheaper to run compared to other hobs because the heat goes directly to the pan rather than the whole cooking surface.
I have used this for most of my cooking: I made pasta a few times, risotto, chicken stew and I cooked fish too this week. I found that it can bring to the boil a pot of water or milk in less than 3 minutes! It has a soft touch control panel, easy to clean, a timer with auto switch off. Very clever indeed.
For this recipe, which I made using my new hob, I was inspired by my favourite Italian magazine "Cucina Moderna" which I buy every time I go back to Italy. I am addicted to cookery magazines and I have a few piles at home, some date back to the late 80s. The recipes and the photos were different back then, these days they are so much more sophisticated.
If you like chocolate and mint then this is the recipe for you and it is straightforward too.
- Prep Time : 20 minutes
- Cook Time : 10 minutes
Put the gelatine sheets in cold water to soften for 20 minutes.
In a sauce pan put the cream, 150 ml or 5 fluid oz of milk and the sugar and bring to the boil. Remove from the heat.
Squeeze the water out of the gelatine sheets with your hands and add them to the pan with the milk and the cream. Tear 20 mint leaves in halves and add them to the mixture too.
Mix well and let it rest for 8 minutes stirring from time to time then filter with a mesh strainer.
Rinse with cold water 4 disposable plastic cups. Let the mixture cool down a little then pour it into the cups. Put them in the fridge to set for at least 5 hours.
Bring the remaining milk to the boil, add the chocolate chopped into smaller pieces and mix well.
Take the cups with the pannacotta out of the fridge, warm them up a little with your hands, turn them upside down and gently tap them over a plate to release the panna cotta. Pour some chocolate sauce on top and decorate with mint leaves.
Et voila'! Pretty isn't? 🙂 And DELICIOUS too!
I was sent a “Severin” induction hob to take part on the “Great Oven Ban Challenge”. All opinions are my own.