BaltimOregon to Maine

Locavore Cooking with Southern Efficiency and Northern Charm

Posts Tagged ‘yogurt

Luscious Yogurt Panna Cotta: My New Favorite Make-at-Home Dessert

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With a stewed strawberry-rhubarb sauce.

Or with creamy, non-stringy Atulfo mango, mint and lemon verbena.

Searching for a fail-safe dessert recipe that’s always sure to impress your guests? What about a simple, but elegant, no-bake panna cotta?

I ran across this luscious recipe from our local Nancy’s Yogurt while searching for something new to do with rhubarb. It’s from Cathy Whims of Portland’s acclaimed Italian spot, Nostrana. To lighten it up, I used two-thirds yogurt to one-thirds cream. I couldn’t stop dipping my spoon into the pot as the concoction warmed. And it was hard to wait overnight for the gelatinous molds to cool before digging in. But then your work is done and your dessert sits patiently in the fridge, waiting for your guests. Minimal assembly is required. Just un-mold the ramekins, jiggling the panna cotta out with that satisfying Jello thwump. Garnish with fruit and serve. In addition to strawberry and rhubarb, it’s also delicious with creamy, cut-up mango.

Your guests will be delighted. My brother-in-law said it was one of the best desserts (he must have meant at-home desserts) he’s ever had. It’s like a custard or creme brulee but easier on the waistline and so much easier to prepare. This yogurt panna cotta almost reminds me of that custard-style Yoplait Thick & Creamy I used to love as a child, but better. It’s all about the texture. But then so many memorable foods are.

I think I’ve only made panna cotta once before, a lumpier pumpkin panna cotta for Thanksgiving that was hard to strain and keep smooth. I remember loving a passion fruit panna cotta I once splurged on at the Silver Moon Bakery on the Upper Upper West Side. I plan to make this panna cotta during next winter’s grapefruit season. This non-baker is thrilled to have another dessert to add to her repertoire. Just don’t wear it out, right?

Written by baltimoregon

May 24, 2010 at 12:43 am

The Milkman Cometh!

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Ah, Pleasantville: Our First Delivery from a Local Organic Dairy.

What a pleasure to receive our first milk delivery today. Like canning and knitting and other homey rituals of yore, milk deliveries are making a comeback. I knew the South Mountain Creamery we used to patronize at Baltimore’s Waverly Farmers’ Market delivered, but we never took advantage of that service. And here in Oregon, we’ve usually purchase local Lochmead milk (until learning their plastic containers might contain BPA) and then increasingly Organic Valley. But who knew we had other options?

It turns out local organic Noris Dairy, in nearby Crabtree (Scio area) delivers to Corvallis once a week. Our friend Amy in Eugene had raved about their milk. I even got to sample some steamed in a frothy cappuccino she prepared for me. But it was only at the recent Chef’s Show-Off and Local Foods Fair Ten Rivers Food Web hosted at LBCC that I learned about the home-delivery service. At that event, Noris kindly plied us with samples of cream-top milk, chocolate milk, and several cheeses (the mozzarella was good: perfectly salted). Then I called in a delivery.

Sauteed some Oregon sea bass in Noris butter with maitake mushrooms and leeks, topped with chopped chervil from the garden.

When I returned home from teaching today, there the insulated bag sat on the front stoop, full of non-homogenized milk, blocks of cheese and salted butter and a container of ricotta. It’s less processed, and I believe pasteurized at lower temperatures, than your standard bland supermarket milk. They ran out of the fruity yogurts I ordered, but Noris left an I.O.U. to redeem with our next order. The butter added a lovely touch to the local sea bass (not to be confused with the over-fished Chilean variety) I sauteed up with some maitake mushrooms and leeks for supper.

Written by baltimoregon

April 27, 2010 at 11:09 am

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