The big day may be over with for another a year but that doesn’t mean that we’re done with the feasting – as far as I’m concerned that doesn’t finish until the clock strikes January! This rich, creamy cheesecake is the perfect dessert for this […]
This is such a classic Christmas combination. Tart cranberries and sweet fragrant orange combined with all the luxury and indulgence we deserve at this time of year. Panna cotta is also a fantastic dessert for the festive season, when we’re all so busy and could do with a few more hours in the day to get everything done. You can make this dessert well ahead of time, even a couple of days if you need to, and then just forget about it until your guests are ready for pudding. It’s also really quite quick and easy to prepare. Do I need to give you any more reasons to make it?
250ml whipping cream
250ml whole milk
zest of 2 clementines
1 vanilla pod
1 tbsp sugar
3 leaves of gelatine
juice of two clementines
Soak the gelatine in a little cold water and set it aside.
Combine the cream, milk, sugar, clementine zest and vanilla in a pan and gently heat it but don’t let it get too hot. Remove the pan from the heat and fish out the vanilla pod, if you like you can scrape out the seeds and stir them into the cream mixture.
Squeeze the excess water from the gelatine and then stir this into the cream, ensuring that it dissolves. Set this aside to cool to almost room temperature.
Once cooled you can give it a stir and pour it into pretty glasses or jars and then transfer it to the fridge to set.
Combine the cranberries with the sugar and clementine juice in a small pan and gently simmer until the fruit has cooked down and become pulpy. Set this aside to cool and use it to top the panna cottas once they are set.
This summer we visited Ecuador on our way back from the US to the UK (yeah, I know, it’s not the most direct route!) I bought a big block of spiced hot chocolate back with me as an edible souvenir (the best kind). You just chop it up and melt it with milk to produce deliciously rich, thick, warmly spiced hot chocolate.
In spite of its size it’s not going to last forever though so I thought I had better set about working out a recipe to recreate it when it does eventually run out. Cinnamon, chili and dark chocolate are always delicious together and the touch of cornflour gives it a gloriously velvety feel. This is a real treat.
80g dark chocolate
2 tsp cornflour
1/2 tsp ground cinnamon
1/2 tsp vanilla extract
pinch of chili powder (or to taste)
splash of rum (optional)
whipped cream to serve
Finely chop the chocolate and add it to a pan with the milk. Whisk in the cornflour and flavourings and then set the pan over a low heat. Whisk or stir the pan until everything has melted together and the cornflour has thickened the hot chocolate a little. Add the booze, if you’re using it, and then pour into mugs and top with whipped cream.