Yogurt Panna Cotta with Rosemary Cornmeal Cookies

In the large family of creamy desserts the panna cotta is the easiest and fastest one to prepare. It simply sets with gelatin; but what really matters is the quantity of the gelatin used. Too much of the last and the panna cotta gets unpleasantly rubbery. I think the best textured panna cotta is served from a bowl (or glass, or ramekin) but not proudly presented unmolded on a plate. Less formal presentation requires less amount of gelatin ensuring better mouthfeel. Flavor-wise, I love the yogurt or buttermilk panna cotta best for its tanginess. And I simply adore it for its calorie-moderation.

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Chocolate Soy Pudding with Pistachio Brittle

Soy pudding can be good. But it will be only as good as your soy milk is. And this is also possible, you just have to sample and find the favorite one. The flavor of the soy milk differs significantly, from brand to brand. My personal favorite is made by “Organic Valley”. Unfortunately, I can’t find it in Canada. We buy it in the US once in a while (a benefit of living close to the border). The “Silk” would be my second choice. The most common soy milk here in BC is “So Nice” which I find not nice at all. Is it too much trouble for a dessert that could be perfectly made from half-and-half? Well, you decide, but this is definitely a healthy alternative. I wish I could be consistent and always so health-conscious. One day I make my pudding from soy milk, another day – I deep-fry my cheesecake leftovers.

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Chestnut Mascarpone Mousse and Tuile Cookies

This month Daring Bakers challenge hosted by Karen of Bake My Day and Zorra of 1x umruehren bitte aka Kochtopf was tuiles. There were four different recipes given to choose from including a savory one. First, I had a solid intention to make them all. Then, I waited, and waited a little bit longer… , and then some urgent matter came up…, and I ended up doing the challenge the night before the due date. I basically, fixed it from what I had at home. Procrastination is definitely not a virtue.

The tuiles recipe I used is adapted from “The Chocolate Book” by Angélique Schmeink. I have to say I was surprised how well they retained their crispiness compare to other recipes I tried before. I baked vanilla and chocolate leaf-shaped tuiles, and made some hazelnut brittle leaves as well. I served the cookies with the mousse which was a simple combination of a chestnut puree, mascarpone, whipped egg whites, and rum; I added some gelatin to set the mixture and turn it into mini-tortes. The crust was ground hazelnuts, chocolate cookie crumbs, melted chocolate, and more rum. I sprinkle some grated bittersweet chocolate over the top of the mousse and placed a rum-flavored chantilly quenelle (I was pirating in my previous life) on the top of each serving. There was also a chocolate–caramel sauce (not shown) to decorate the plates.

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Cocoa Nib Pudding

This pudding is so creamy, so wonderfully smooth, so delicately flavored. I wish the picture could have been more persuasive. The lack of decent daylight here adversely affects the quality of the photographs. But you can trust my words – this pudding is very much worth to be made. It can be enjoyed warm, cool, or chilled. If you are not quite fond of a pudding skin, press plastic wrap directly against the surface as soon as you poured the pudding into serving bowls. I usually skip this step.

The recipe is from the “Bittersweet”.

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Cranberry Orange Mousse

Cranberry Orange Mousse

Cranberries are in abundance now. I believe it makes a perfect sense buying them and freezing for later use while they are so reasonably priced. I’m thinking about Christmas, in particular :) It’s probably too early but I’ve got this obtrusive idea… Does anybody else feel Christmas in the air? I even made sugar-glazed cranberries to decorate the mousse. But I didn’t use them as I was told it was quite premature. After all, we’ve just had Thanksgiving here. It’s probably the general holiday spirit, I guess…

A word about the mousse – the mousse was nice. For white chocolate haters – it tasted as it’s supposed to – cranberry-like, so there’s nothing to worry about.

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Mango Pudding

Mango Pudding

If I didn’t cook from the books I buy in such abundance there wouldn’t be any excuses for my compulsiveness, at least in my husband’s eyes. But since I use the books I purchase, everybody is happy. Especially when a dessert turns out so wonderfully flavorful, creamy, refreshing, and eye-appealing. The pudding recipe is from Sherry Yard’s “Desserts by the Yard”. I must emphasize it is ridiculously easy to make, and highly addictive. Two of us gobbled up a couple of servings each and only the finally woken up consciousness forced us to stop and leave some for our kid to try. He loved it too, he ate the pudding for his breakfast next morning with very impressive enthusiasm.

I’m submitting the mango pudding photo as an entry to “Click-Yellow for Bri”, a special edition of a monthly theme-based photography contest in honor of Briana Brownlow, hosted by Jugalbandi.

Mango More

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