I love to cook and I love to eat good food.  Alas, the fact that I work 9-5 means that I can't do either as much as I would like, and like many I am often stuck at my desk during my lunch "hour".  My solution is to try to bring my lunch to work as much as I can.  This is my collection of recipes, all made quickly the night before (either as lunch or as dinner with leftovers that can be taken in).  Happy eating.

Sunday, 9 August 2009

Lime & coconut panna cotta with blueberries



This week's BSI challenge, hosted by My Kitchen Addiction, is lime.

The lime is certainly a good challenge ingredient: a little bit sweet, a little bit tart, but with an alluring (if elusive) flavor and scent. What to make to capture both? I first thought about the key lime pie, imagined lime squares, paused briefly on some lime-based ceviche, but finally decided I was going to make a creamy, zesty, lime panna cotta. I could almost taste the flavors and almost see the beautiful little wobble it would make when inverted onto a serving plate. Also, it's incredibly easy and quick to make (aside from the chilling time).

Alas, it was not to be. I realized I had no gelatin, and no stores in South East London (ok, within a 15 minute walk of my flat) stocked anything.

Then Plan B came to me, or more specifically, "Plan Coconut Milk Pudding which is sort of like Panna Cotta but doesn't need gelatin." (And, hey! is vegan.) I have made very successful chocolate puddings with milk and cornstarch, so I thought I'd try it here with some coconut milk (to give it a little extra flavor, plus: lime & coconut = culinary perfection). I warmed the coconut milk, added the lime juice and some sugar -- enough of both to give a pretty good dose of lime flavor without completely overwhelming the poor tastebuds -- and then stirred in my thickener. I added some blueberries to the coconut mixture when I poured it into my ramekins. I briefly contemplated making a blueberry and lime sauce instead, but decided I liked the fresh blueberries better.

And you know what, it came out pretty well. Lesson learned: always do what the song says and put the lime in the coconut. Here's a picture (post-digging in) so you can see the beautiful blueberries hovering in the coconut cream.



Lime & coconut panna cotta with blueberries

2 C. coconut milk (regular or light or a mixture of both)
3 Tbsp. lime juice
3 Tbsp. sugar
3 Tbsp. cornstarch
Zest of 1 lime
handful of blueberries

Arrange 4 ramekins with a circle of baking parchment to line the bottom of each. This will help the panna cotta to release when ready to serve.

Gently heat coconut milk, lime juice and sugar (adjusting the proportions of the lime and the sugar depending on the sweetness and acidity of your lime). Scoop out 1/4 C. of the coconut milk and whisk the cornstarch in before returning the mixture to the pan. Keep whisking while it heats and thickens. It should thicken nicely before getting to a full boil, at which point remove from heat.

Let the mixture cool slightly, then pour into ramekins, mixing blueberries in. Chill for at least 2-3 hours. To serve, dip ramekin into hot water for 5 seconds or so, then invert onto a plate. (At least this is what should happen. I had to run a knife around the edge of mine to get them to slip out.)

Serves 4

21 comments:

doggybloggy said...

nice twist - I love panna cotta and this version with coconut milk and lime AND blueberries sounds too good!

Erica said...

I love pannacota!!!! Wow!Yours sounds amazing!

Marta said...

I love your improv version of panna cotta... I guess it's really just a quick pudding, but it looks delicious and the flavour combo seems winning!

Sweet and Savory said...

I love the blueberries peeking out. This is a great selection for BSI.

Jen @ My Kitchen Addiction said...

This panna cotta sounds great. I like that you improvised with coconut milk and corn starch instead of gelatin. I have a few vegetarian/vegan friends who would thank you!

Thanks for submitting this for this week's BSI! The round up and winner will be posted soon!

Zoe said...

I love panna cotta, sounds delicious with coconut milk!

Karine said...

Great way to play with lime! It looks amazing!

Palidor said...

Yum! I love coconut and lime together.

Kim (@ Paper Apron) said...

I searched my town over looking for gelatin last week. Every store was out. I suppose people are making summer tarts. Now I see I could've done without it.

Love the panna cotta idea-- it's ingenious!

Finsmom said...

My husband made us panna cotta for the first time on Valentines Day. It was the the first time that either of us had ever tried it, and we LOVED it! Such an amazingly tasty dessert. Your recipe sounds fantastic!

Sarah, The New Girl said...

never heard of pannacota!! sounds like you did a great job putting your own spin on it (love when that happens, even if it is because of a pantry shortage!) and it looks delicious :)

biz319 said...

I thought this was a great use of lime! Good job! :D

Chef Fresco said...

We just made some coconut panna cotta but it did not turn out well at all! Maybe we were just missing the lime :) Yours look great!

Reeni♥ said...

This sounds heavenly with coconut milk!! I love it!

Velva said...

That looks really good! Light and sweet. Perfect!

Hummingbird Appetite said...

I was thinking about using coconut milk to make a vegan dessert, too! (I'm not vegan.) Your panna cotta looks yummy!

figtree said...

This sounds like the best panna cotta ever..cant wait to try it!Figtreeapps

Astra Libris said...

Such a gorgeous, inventive recipe! So clever, and so beautiful! I love how you described "the beautiful little wobble" - too perfect! :-)

Jamie said...

I saw this Lime Panna Cotta on the BSI round up and just wanted to make it (if I couldn't eat yours). It is beautiful and as Panna Cotta is husbands all time fave dessert, well I gotta try it! Gorgeous! And I love coconut!

Ashley said...

I've been wanting to try making panna cotta - this one looks great!

Leela said...

This looks delicious! Lime and coconut make such a great combination. Love it!

Blog Widget by LinkWithin