Coffee Panna Cotta with Chocolate Cream Recipe

Coffee Panna Cotta is your traditional favorite panna cotta with a twist.  Flavored with coffee and served with a chocolate cream.  This Coffee version adds a new look and taste to this popular Italian dessert.

Panna Cotta literally translates as “cooked cream” in Italian, it is like eating a creamy cappuccino in a softly set, creamy Italian pudding.   They are so silky-smooth they slip down beautifully at the end of a meal. This make-ahead dessert is also perfect for dinner parties. Make them a day or two in advance and keep refrigerated until you are ready to serve them.



Coffee Panna Cotta with Chocolate Cream Recipe

Coffee Panna Cotta With Chocolate Cream Recipe

Prep Time: 3 hours, 30 minutes

Cook Time: 3 hours, 30 minutes

Yield: 4 to 6 servings


2 1/2 teaspoons unflavored gelatin*
2 teaspoons espresso coffee granules
1/2 cup milk
2 1/2 cups heavy cream**
1/2 cup granulated sugar
1 vanilla bean (2 inch long and split lengthwise with a knife) or 2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract
Chocolate-covered coffee beans, for garnish
Chocolate Cream (see recipe below)

* It is always best to measure the the amount of gelatin needed as the envelopes of gelatin can vary.

** Half and half, buttermilk, whole milk, and/or sour cream may be substituted for part of the cream.



In a small bowl, add the coffee granules and 1/2 cup milk; sprinkle the gelatin over the milk; let stand until the gelatin is softened, about 5 minutes.

In a large saucepan, combine heavy cream and sugar.  Add vanilla extract or vanilla bean.  If using a vanilla bean, slice the bean lengthwise and scrape out seeds into cream (add whole bean to cream for additional flavor).  Bring cream just to a simmer (do not let it boil), whisking occasionally until sugar has completely dissolved; remove from heat and remove vanilla bean pod.  Add the softened gelatin/coffee mixture and whisk to completely dissolve the gelatin.

Strain hot cream mixture into a large glass measuring cup with a pouring spout; pour into ramekins or custard cups.  NOTE: Do o't skip the straining step as it removes any bits of un-dissolved gelatin or coffee and insures a nice smooth dessert.  Also, do not let the cream mixture cool before straining.  If using a vanilla bean, lightly swirl the cream to distribute the seeds evenly.  Refrigerate for at least 3 hours or overnight.

To unmold and serve, carefully dip bottom of each ramekin in a baking pan of hot water briefly. Run a thin knife around edge of each ramekin to loosen it from the inside of the bowl.  Wipe the outside of the mold dry and place on individual chilled serving plate (topside down).  Invert the custard onto the plate and carefully lift off ramekin (shake gently to release).  Pour the Chocolate Cream around the panna cotta.  Dot drops of the reserved cream onto the Chocolate Sauce and feather it with a toothpick.  Also looks great in martini glasses which you don't unmold.

Decorate with chocolate-covered coffee beans and serve.

Chocolate Coffee Beans


Chocolate Cream:

2/3 cup light cream
2 ounces semi-sweet chocolate, melted*

* Learn different techniques for How To Melt Chocolate.
Place 1/4 of the cream in a bowl and stir in the melted chocolate. Gradually stir in the remaining cream, reserving 1 tablespoon for the garnish.



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