Panna cotta

Panna cotta is one of the most famous Italian desserts in the world, not only because it is easy to prepare, but also for its delicate taste and elegant plating. The origins of the panna cotta are unknown, but we know that this dessert was born in Piedmont Langhe at the beginning of the XX Century. The panna cotta is a spoon dessert ideal for any season, as it can be accompanied by several sauces: caramel, melted chocolate or fresh fruit.
Preparazione: 15 min
Cottura: 15 min
Dosi per: 4 persone


  • The first step to prepare a great panna cotta is to soak the gelatine sheets in cold water for at least 10 minutes. Take out the vanilla seeds from the bean by scraping it with the tip of the knife. Pour in a saucepan the single cream and the sugar.
  • Add the vanilla seeds and the bean. Cook the mixture on a low heat without boiling. At that point, turn off the heat and put out the vanilla bean.
  • When the gelatine sheets become soft, drain them without wringing them, then dip it in the saucepan with the hot single cream. Mix with a wooden spoon or by whisking, until the gelatine melts completely. Avoid the formation of lumps. At that point, pour the panna cotta in the cutters.
  • Place the panna cotta cutters in the fridge and leave them harden for at least 5 hours. Before you serve them, soak each panna cotta cutter in boiling water, then immediately extract them and serve them au naturel, with caramel, with melted chocolate or with a fruit coulis.

You can keep the panna cotta in your fridge for 3-4 days, but it has to be covered with cling film or put in a sealed container. You can also freeze it: to defrost the panna cotta, just put it in the fridge the day before.


  • You may find it difficult to handle the fish gelatine, but remember it is important to give to panna cotta its shiny and compact appearance.
  • If you follow a vegetarian diet, or in case you don’t feel comfortable using animal-derived ingredients like fish gelatin is, you can opt for the agar agar, an alga-based vegetable gelatin, which will give to your panna cotta a creamy consistency without altering its taste.
  • The final touch is given by vanilla. We suggest not to use vanillin, as it leaves a bitter aftertaste. Better use natural vanilla or vanilla natural extract to give the panna cotta is sweet and scented taste. In case you don’t like vanilla, you can also flavor the panna cotta with citrus peel, Marsala, lavender, coffee or grated ginger…

With its simple yet strong flavor the panna cotta can be accompanied by any taste. Let your imagination run free and… Buon appetito!