Saturday, January 12, 2008

Chocolate Mint Pannacotta


This is one of my favorite dishes from the 13-course dinner we had the other day. Not only is it ridiculously easy to prepare in advance, it's also extremely delicious and it was a big hit with everyone. The recipe comes from Elisabeth Johansson who is a great pastry chef and has written several lovely books in the past few years. I admire her very much, and am happy she's sharing her excellent recipes.

You do need to prepare this well in advance, since the layers need time to set. If you're really pressed for time, I think you could skip the final layer of mint jelly - it was good, but it would have still been great without it.

The decoration is a mint-chocolate toffee, a classic Swedish candy that I remember well from my childhood. The whole dish is definitely inspired by their flavor, so that's why it's so good to decorate with (plus it's unusual and makes people laugh a bit) but you could also use a few raspberries or other berries for that matter. Or just a sprig of fresh mint, or some chocolate curls. Anything!

Chocolate Mint Pannacotta
8 small servings

Mint pannacotta:
1 gelatin leaf
250 ml (1 cup) heavy cream
50 ml (3 tbsp + 1 tsp) sugar
peppermint extract

Chocolate pannacotta:
1 gelatin leaf
250 ml (1 cup) heavy cream
1 tbsp sugar
50 g dark chocolate, finely chopped

Mint jelly:
1 gelatin leaf
50 ml (3 tbsp + 1 tsp) sugar
100 ml water
peppermint extract

To decorate:
cocoa powder
Mint Chocolate toffees, or berries, or anything you'd like.

Start with the mint layer. Soak the gelatin in cold water for five minutes to soften. Mix cream and sugar in a saucepan and bring to a boil. Add the gelatin and stir until it's dissolved. Flavor with mint extract - you have to taste it and add a little at a time, drop by drop, until it's as strong as you want it. You'll only need a little bit! Pour into small glasses and place in the fridge for two hours.

For the chocolate layer, do exactly the same thing - soak the gelatin, heat cream and sugar, add gelatin and stir. Then add the chocolate and stir until smooth. Pour gently on top of the mint layer, and place back in the fridge for two more hours.

For the jelly, again soak the gelatin in cold water. Heat sugar and water until boiling, and add the gelatin. Flavor with mint extract. Let this cool at room temperature, and then gently pour it on top of the chocolate layer. Place back in the fridge to set (this sets fairly quickly, since it's a much thinner layer).

To serve, dust over some cocoa powder and decorate as you wish.

Recipe in Swedish:


Anonymous said...

Sounds delicious, Anne!! When you poured the second layer on top of the first, did you pour over the back of a spoon held near the side of the glass? This prevents splashes.
I like mint & chocolate, so I'll definitely give this dessert a go soon.

Annemarie said...

I'm a sucker for minty chocolate anything, and in a creamy setting it sounds very wintery and more-ish.

Anne said...

Pene - no, I didn't bother with that. You could, I suppose, but as long as the bottom layer is fairly firm, it should be fine.

Annemarie - definitely wintery! Although, well, I think I'd be happy to have this any time of year :)

Lena said...

Mmmm... Best dessert I have had in a long time.

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annamaria said...

Åhhh vad det låter och ser fantastiskt gott ut! pannacotta är för all del gott i alla former men med mint...mmmm

Dagmar said...

This dessert was amazing Anne when we had it at your place. We loved it!

Jelly said...

I love mint & chocolate combo!
I'll try it!

Anne said...

This sounds really good!