Sunday, February 27, 2011

Daring Bakers Feb 2011 - Mango Panna Cotta and Florentines

Blog Checking Lines: The February 2011 Daring Bakers’ challenge was hosted by Mallory from A Sofa in the Kitchen. She chose to challenge everyone to make Panna Cotta from a Giada De Laurentiis recipe and Nestle Florentine Cookies.

For this months challenge we had to make two things that were complete opposites. Soft, smooth and silky panna cotta with crispy, crunchy Florentines. While I have eaten panna cotta once before I had never even heard of Florentines. Whenever we have a challenge to make something I have not eaten before I feel a little lost as I have nothing to compare my results against. Though my cookies tasted good they did not spread out into thin discs. I guess I was supposed to flatten them with a spoon before putting them in the oven. I made only a quarter of the recipe and loved the cookies.
The panna cotta was very easy and straightforward to make. I replaced the honey and added mango pulp to make mango panna cotta and added a layer of mango jelly which I made using the pulp and gelatin. I reduced the recipe by a third because I didn't want to have so much of the creamy stuff to tempt me and still got 4 servings. I loved the taste of it but hubby was not a big fan. He wanted more of a mango punch and I ended up eating all four servings! (Over a few days mind you).

Ingredients - 1/3 of the Original Recipe with my changes in Red

1/3 Cup Whole Milk (80 ml)
1 Tsp (5 ml) Unflavored Powdered Gelatin
1 Cup (240 ml) Whipping Cream (30+% butterfat)
2 Tbsp (30 ml) Honey - I used 4 Tbsp Mango Pulp
1 Tsp (5 ml) Granulated Sugar - I used 2 Tsp
Pinch of Salt

1. Pour the milk into a bowl or pot and sprinkle gelatin evenly and thinly over the milk (make sure the bowl/pot is cold by placing the bowl/pot in the refrigerator for a few minutes before you start making the Panna Cotta). Let stand for 5 minutes to soften the gelatin.
2. Pour the milk into the saucepan/pot and place over medium heat on the stove. Heat this mixture until it is hot, but not boiling, about five minutes. (I whisk it a few times at this stage).
3. Next, add the cream, honey (I added the mango pulp after the sugar), sugar, and pinch of salt. Making sure the mixture doesn't boil, continue to heat and stir occasionally until the sugar and honey have dissolved 5-7 minutes.
4. Remove from heat, allow it to sit for a few minutes to cool slightly. Then pour into the glass or ramekin.
5. Refrigerate at least 6 hours or overnight. Add garnishes and serve.

Nestle Florentine Cookies

2/3 Cup (160 ml) (150 gm) (5.3 oz) Unsalted Butter
2 Cups (480 ml) (160 gm) (5 2/3 oz) Quick Oats

1 Cup Granulated Sugar
2/3 cup (160 ml) (95 gm) (3⅓ oz) All Purpose Flour (Maida)
1/4 cup (60 ml) Dark Corn Syrup - I used Lyle's Golden Syrup
1/4 Cup (60 ml) Whole Milk
1 Tsp Vanilla Extract
Pinch of Salt
1½ Cups (360 ml) (250 gm) (9 oz) Dark or Milk Chocolate - Prefer Semi Sweet as the cookies are quite sweet

1. Preheat oven to moderately hot 375°F (190°C) (gas mark 5). Prepare your baking sheet with silpat or parchment paper.
2. Melt butter in a medium saucepan, then remove from the heat.
3. To the melted butter add oats, sugar, flour, corn syrup, milk, vanilla, and salt. Mix well. Drop a tablespoon full, three inches (75 mm) apart, onto your prepared baking sheet. Flatten slightly with the back of your tablespoon, or use a spatula. (Flatten well as mine didn't spread on their own)
4. Bake in preheated oven for 6-8 minutes, until cookies are golden brown. Cool completely on the baking sheets.
5. While the cookies are cooling melt your chocolate until smooth either in the microwave (1 1/2 minutes), or stovetop (in a double boiler, or a bowl that fits atop a saucepan filled with a bit of water, being sure the water doesn't touch the bottom of the bowl).
6. Peel the cookies from the silpat or parchment and place face down on a wire rack set over a sheet of wax/parchment paper (to keep counters clean).
7. Spread a tablespoon of chocolate on the bottom/flat side of your cookie, sandwiching another (flat end) cookie atop the chocolate.

Happy Eating!!


  1. WOW I'm glad to hear that the mango well down so well, sometimes mango interferes with the gelling effect. Lovely work on this challenge.

    Cheers from Audax in Sydney Australia.

  2. Mango must have made this so tropical tasting, yum!

  3. Great idea to make the panna cotta mango, then pair it with the mango gelee. And I love that chocolate covered florentine in the picture - I want a bite!! Really great job!

  4. I am glad that one of you enjoyed he panna cotta...! I think the light mango flavor sounds great with the mango jelly. And isn't the taste more important than the look of the cookies? I, too, loved the florentines. Great work on the challenge!

  5. I think mango is one of the best flavours one can put in any dessert! :)


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