How to Make the Perfect Pannacotta at Home
Pannacotta is one of those tricky desserts that even professional chefs often struggle with. But on the bright side, you can have it ready in no-time (especially helpful if you have sudden guests coming over).
And if you practice it a few times, it isn’t that hard either. I was able to nail it by the 2nd attempt itself and here’s what I learned from my mistakes.
Follow these tips and pannacotta problems will be a thing of the past.
Tips to Make the Perfect Pannacotta
First and foremost, if you are a vegan and do not want to use Gelatine then Agar Agar is the best alternative. It is made using seaweed and is available both as flakes or in powder form.
Agar-Agar in powder form is a straightforward substitute which means for every 1 teaspoon of gelatine, you can throw in 1 teaspoon of agar-agar.
But if you are using flakes than note the substitution is slightly different as the powder tends to be more potent. In the case of flakes, 1 teaspoon of gelatine equals 1 tablespoon of agar-agar flakes.
If you have not worked with Agar-Agar before, here’s how to use it.
With the powder, just dissolve them into liquid and heat the liquid. Make sure it dissolves completely for the best results.
When using flakes, I would recommend breaking them down into smaller bits before adding them to liquid heated on medium flame. Once again, make sure they dissolve completely.
Tip 2: When using gelatine you should always go with unflavored gelatine. Gelatine also needs to be dissolved in hot liquid for the proteins to get activated. Otherwise, there is a chance your pannacotta not set properly.
Tip 3: To check if the gelatine or agar-agar are dissolved well enough, just rub the mix on your fingers and if there are no grits then you are good to go.
Tip 4: If you use the right amount of gelatine your pannacotta will have the right amount of wobble. Check your recipe and measure out your ingredients in advance. Excess of gelatine will result in a cheesy and stiff pannacotta while too little of it will turn your pannacotta into a puddle.
Tip 5: If you want to give your Pannacotta a healthy twist then you can substitute heavy cream with light cream or milk. This will also make the pannacotta lighter in texture. If you are using low-fat milk then you will have to increase the gelatine content to ensure it does not fall apart.
Tip 6: When you are making the pannacotta base of cream and sugar allow the mix to simmer rather than boil. This means standing near the mix for the whole time. If the heat is too much, the mixture will split.
Top 7: Do not forget to strain the mixture before you put it into the mold as your pannacotta will come out with the smoothest texture. Also, when you pour the mixture into the mold, make sure it isn’t too hot.
Tip 8: The pannacotta needs to be chilled at least for 2-3 hours for it to set. When de-molding, use soft hands and run a knife along the edge so it comes out smoothly.