Rosewater Panna Cotta with Ricotta and Pistachios

by eat in my kitchen

Rosewater Panna Cotta with Ricotta and Pistachios

Although I’m much more into cakes, pies and cookies than classic desserts, I can enjoy a good panna cotta once in a while with great satisfaction. It only needs a strong addition, chocolate doesn’t work for me here but fruits or fragrant flavours. Rosewater, orange blossom water, lavender, rosemary or spices like aniseed, cinnamon or cardamom. Anything which gives the pure milky taste of this basic cream a bit of a punch, a more defined direction is not only welcoming but also necessary to get me hooked on this dish.

Today’s recipe definitely manages to get my full attention, the flowery hint of delicate rosewater is more than tempting. It’s important that you adjust the amount of the fragrant infusion to your taste though, every product tastes different and varies in intensity. My rosewater is organic, it has no artificial or overpowering nuances, so I could whisk 5 teaspoons into the cream without feeling knocked down by its aroma. Especially in combination with the soft nuttiness of the topping, unsalted pistachios, it reveals a warm, summery feeling. I also stirred in some fresh ricotta which makes it a bit lighter and fits the season.

There’s no reason for my preference of baked desserts, the list of recipes on eat in my kitchen can’t hide that I totally fall for anything baked. Every few days, I feel the need to eat something sweet that includes pastries, cake doughs and batters. I adore the smell in my kitchen when there’s a cake rising in the oven. The whole process of baking food, the warm air around the oven, it feels quite archaic, I like that. But then there are those days which call for different treats, especially in summer, and even more so when we go to Malta, living above 30°C / 86°F constantly day and night, that’s the right time for creamy desserts: flans like the Spanish crème caramel, French creme brûlée, Bavarian cream or the wonderful Italian panna cotta. They tend to be lighter and less filling after an extensive dinner. And the preparation takes less time, which makes it a convenient crowd pleaser. You just have to time it well and keep in mind that it has to set in the fridge for a few hours which is another reason to give it a go at your summer dinner parties. You just open the door of your fridge, pull out the ramekins and sprinkle them pretty – done!

Rosewater Panna Cotta with Ricotta and Pistachios

 

Rosewater Panna Cotta with Ricotta and Pistachios

Rosewater Panna Cotta with Ricotta and Pistachios 

For a small dessert for 4 or for a hungry couple (like us) you need

gelatine sheets (size 7 1/2 x 11 1/2cm / 3 x 4 1/2″) 2 1/2 sheets
heavy cream 240ml / 1 cup
milk 110ml / 1/2 cup
a pinch of salt
sugar 40g / 3 generous tablespoons
vanilla pod, scraped, 1
quality rosewater (preferably organic) 5 tablespoons, to taste
fresh ricotta 50g / scant 1/4 cup
unsalted pistachios, chopped, 1 1/2 tablespoons, for the topping
rose pedals, for the topping (optionally)

Break the gelatin sheets in half and soak in a bowl of cold water for 5 minutes.

In a sauce pan, bring the cream, milk, salt, sugar and vanilla to the boil. Take the pan off the heat once it’s bubbling and squeeze in the gelatin, add the whole crumbled sheets and whisk until dissolved. Add 2 teaspoons of rosewater and the ricotta and whisk until combined. Add more rosewater to taste (I stopped at 5 teaspoons) and let the mixture cool in the pan (whisk it a few times while cooling). Once the cream is cool (it will still be liquid) pour it into 4 small ramekins, cover with cling film and refrigerate for about 4 hours (or overnight) or until the panna cotta is set. Sprinkle with chopped pistachios and rose pedals, you can also serve it with fruits, strawberries are great!

Rosewater Panna Cotta with Ricotta and Pistachios

 

Rosewater Panna Cotta with Ricotta and Pistachios

 

Rosewater Panna Cotta with Ricotta and Pistachios

 

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