Coconut-Cardamom Panna Cotta

Recently I was lucky enough to dine with 8 of the coolest bloggers in the area at Lil Vinny's in Somerville, Ma.  Thanks Boston Brunchers!  It was a great night with course after course of tasty Italian food and fun conversation. You can see lots of good pics of the food on Rachel's site, including an awkward pic of me.(is there any other type?)  Lil Vinny's did something to me that night that is rare for a restaurant to do. They left me remembering the dessert more than any other course! Normally I'm not the biggest dessert guy, but their vanilla panna cotta was really good. I've always wanted to make panna cotta, but eating theirs brought this dish to the top of my list. I finally made one this week and was shocked to see that it's insanely easy!  If you have ever made jello shots, (And I have.  Many many many times) then you will be right at home.
The cream and coconut milk steeping with the cardamom. Strain it out as you pour it into the gelatin. Buttered and sugared ramekins. Toasted coconut. At work I toast coconut all day, so this was kind of annoying because it made me feel like I was at work. Also I burned it the first time. Which also made me feel like I was at work. Personal issues aside, this was super easy and crazy delicious. The texture is silky smooth. To quote the most played out adjective in the whole food porn world, this panna cotta was really pillowy. Who are all these people that want to eat pillows? It pretty much melts in your mouth. Slightly gingery cardamom hints, with a strong coconut flavor and smell, but the texture is what it's all about here.
 

Coconut-Cardamom Panna Cotta

  • 1 Cup Cream
  • 1 Can Coconut Milk
  • 1/2 Cup Sugar
  • 20 Cardamom pods
  • 3 Tablespoons Water
  • 2.5 Tablespoons Gelatin
  • Coconut Flakes

Instructions

  1. Heat the cream, coconut milk, sugar, and cardamom(open the pods and add the seeds inside only) until simmering. Allow to cook about 5 minutes stirring often.
  2. Meanwhile mix the water and gelatin. Pour the cream mixture through a strainer over the water and gelatin. Stir to combine well.
  3. Pour into greased and sugared ramekins and refrigerate 2-3 hours. To unmold, run a knife around the edges and flip onto a plate. Top with toasted coconut flakes and serve.