Panna cotta is Italian for cooked cream, it is pretty much a set cream similar to jelly it should have a distinct wobble. It is a simple dessert that can be made into many flavors. The mix can be infused with Vanilla, Tonka beans, or even have alcohol added. This is once of my favorite combinations for pannacotta. I like to use Amedei white chocolate, white chocolates tend to be very sweet. Amedei is one of the least sweet I have come across and the depth of flavor and quality is second to none. If you can also get your hands on wild strawberries these are a great addition to this dish. I like to freeze them and serve from the freezer the burst of flavor when eaten is amazing.
White chocolate panna cotta
200g Double cream
40g White chocolate
3.5 Bronze gelatine leaves (10.5g)
Earl grey tea sugar
10g Earl grey tea
Wild strawberry sorbet
100g Wild strawberry puree
4g Stabilizer (optional)
110g Demerara sugar
220g Plain flour
Wild strawberry gel
250g Wild strawberry puree
White chocolate powder
120g White chocolate
Make the sorbet first, this will need time to age and to harden once churned. Place the water, dextrose sugar and stabilizer if using into a thick based pan. Place over a medium heat and stir until all the ingredients have dissolved into the water. Remove from the heat and pass through a fine sieve onto the cold puree. Place into the fridge to age for at least 4 hours.
Next is the white chocolate panna cotta, Place the gelatine into ice-cold water to bloom (Hydrating with water to help dissolve into the pannacotta) Heat the milk and sugar until hot but not boiling, remove from the heat and whisk in the chocolate until smooth. If the chocolate doesn't fully melt, place back over a very gentle heat to melt, only leave over the heat for a couple of seconds at a time as it is quite easy to burn the chocolate. Remove the gelatine from the water squeezing out as much excess water as possible. Add to the hot milk mixture whisking until smooth. Pass through a fine sieve onto the cold cream whisking constantly to disperse the milk mixture evenly into the cream.
Pour into dariole molds and place in the fridge to set for at least 2 hours. If you do not have dariole molds foil containers also work.
For the crumble preheat the oven to 180c & line a tray with baking paper. Place all the ingredients into a bowl and rub together between your fingers until you have an even fine crumb. Turn out onto the lined tray & bake @ 180c for 5mins remove from the oven and mix on the tray, repeat these steps until the crumble is dark and golden.
To make the wild strawberry gel, mix the agar and the sugar and set aside. Place the wild strawberry puree into a pan and place over a medium heat. Once the puree starts to boil remove from the heat and whisk in the sugar mix until fully combined. Place back over the heat and bring back to the boil constantly whisking. Once boiled remove from the heat and pass into a container, chill until firm. Blitz in a blender adding a splash of water until smooth and silky, pass through a fine sieve and place into a piping bag.
Finally, for the white chocolate powder, place the white chocolate into a heatproof bowl and place over a pan of simmering water (Bain Marie). Stir until the chocolate is completely melted. Pour the white chocolate into a blender and add the maltodextrin, blitz until you have a fine powder. You may need to add a little extra maltodextrin depending on the chocolate.
Take the chilled pannacotta from the fridge and run the base of the mold under warm water. This will loosen the panna cotta, pull down one side of the pannacotta, this will allow air to get into the mold, and release the panna cotta. Turn out just off center of the plate. Sprinkle some of the crumble around the panna cotta. Take some fresh strawberries and wild strawberries if available (I like to freeze these and serve from the freezer) hull and ½ & ¼ the strawberries into a bowl, sprinkle over a little Earl Grey tea sugar and toss. As these sit on the plate the sugar will start to infuse into the strawberries. Evenly space the strawberries on top of the crumble. Pipe 5-6 dots of wild strawberry gel in between the strawberries. Then a sprinkle of the white chocolate powder followed by 2 scoops of the strawberry sorbet. Finally, finish with a few baby basil leaves.