Daring Baker’s: Panna Cotta & Florentine Cookies

27 Feb

As you are reading this I am probably having a fabulous time in San Francisco (And getting ready to head to Lake Tahoe for snowboarding and snow tubing and other fun stuff!), so I’d like to make you feel better by showing you this fabulous panna cotta I made for Daring Baker’s.

When I tasted this panna cotta, it tasted EXACTLY like a melted vanilla milkshake. You can really taste when you are using vanilla beans and vanilla extract, there’s just that extra OMPH of vanilla flavor. Now, if you don’t like melted vanilla milkshake then there is probably something wrong with you.

To be honest, the panna cotta was a little on the extra jiggly side, but I think it was still a success for it being my first time! If you want your panna cotta to be extra creamy, substitute the half and half with heavy cream.

Then, pairing the panna with these beautiful florentine cookies? Oh man, that’s just way too much. I originally wanted to make these into round cookies, however the cookie dough was a little too runny and basically turned into one big sheet by the time I took it out of the oven. Oops? Well, the important thing is that they still tasted fabulous.

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.

Florentine Cookies

As seen on Food Network

  • 2.5oz sliced, blanched almonds
  • 1.5 tbsp all purpose flour
  • 1 tbsp grated orange zest
  • 1/8 tsp salt
  • 1/2 cup sugar
  • 1 tbsp half and half
  • 1 tbsp honey
  • 2.5 tbsp unsalted butter
  • 1/4 tsp vanilla extract
  • 2 oz dark chocolate
  • 3 oz semi-sweet chocolate chips

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper.

In a food processor add the almonds and pulse until finely chopped. Stir together the nuts, flour, orange zest and salt in another mixing bowl.

Put the sugar, half and half, honey and butter in a small sauce pan. Cook over medium heat, stirring occasionally until it comes to a roiling boil. Continue to boil for 1 minute. Remove from heat and stir in the vanilla, then pour into the almond mixture and stir to combine.

Pour the mixture onto the baking sheet and spread evenly. Bake 10-11 minutes, turning pan once, until golden brown.

Let cool for 10 minutes, then using a sharp knife, cut into about 15 pieces. If some of them break, that’s ok!

While they are cooling, fill a small saucepan with water and bring to a simmer. Combine the chocolates and melt until smooth. Once the cookies are cool, place about 1-2 tsp of chocolate on every other cookie and then sandwich them with the other plain cookie. If you want, drizzle more chocolate on top and on any broken pieces. Let them dry completely on a wire rack.

Panna Cotta

As seen on Food & Wine

  • 2 cups half and half
  • 1/4 cup sugar
  • 1/2 vanilla bean, insides scraped
  • 1 1/8 tsp gelatin
  • 1/5 tbsp water

In a small saucepan, combine the half and half, sugar and vanilla bean. Bring the mixture to just a simmer over medium heat. Remove from heat, cover and steep for 15 minutes.

Meanwhile, in a small bowl, sprinkle the gelatin over the water and let stand until evenly moistened, about 5 minutes.

Uncover the cream mixture, and reheat over medium high heat to just a simmer again. Remove from heat, and stir in the gelatin until dissolved. Remove the vanilla bean. Pour the mixture into ramekins and let cool to room temperature. Cover with plastic wrap and refrigerate for at least 3 hours.

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9 Responses to “Daring Baker’s: Panna Cotta & Florentine Cookies”

  1. Mom-in-law...me February 27, 2011 at 10:03 am #

    You know….I think I really love the perfectly cut squares on the cookies. It’s a nice change. Good job honey!!

  2. Elizabeth February 27, 2011 at 11:20 am #

    Oh my gosh they are both gorgeous. Love the flecks of vanilla bean.

  3. Megan February 27, 2011 at 5:26 pm #

    The cookies and the panna cotta both look beautiful. I love the intense flavor from using vanilla beans.

  4. Michelle February 27, 2011 at 6:59 pm #

    I think I’d have traded my round, slightly mismatched cookies for your clean edged cookies! Looks lovely… I’m always enamored by flecks of vanilla bean!

  5. Jenni February 27, 2011 at 10:07 pm #

    Great job! Your panna cotta and florentine cookies look fantastic! I agree with you, they were so good, I cant stop eating the cookies,,

  6. Sheena February 28, 2011 at 5:56 am #

    I can only begin to imagine how beautiful a vanilla bean panna cotta would taste. I actually had the opposite problem with the cookies, they barely spread at all. I love the square shape though, they look like cute little bite sized pieces.

  7. Merut February 28, 2011 at 3:34 pm #

    I think it is awesome and unique that your cookies are square! It’s different. Isn’t a melted vanilla milkshake just vanilla milk? I think I would prefer a melted chocolate milkshake, but that is just me. I love your photos. Good job!

  8. Meesh March 4, 2011 at 3:16 pm #

    these look amazing, I want one now.

  9. erdjon March 31, 2011 at 12:31 am #

    Hello my friend!
    Thanks for the Panna Cotta & Florentine Cookies!

    I forgot, please take a look at my site at http://www.kitchen-cabinet-s.com !

    Best Regards
    Erdjon

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