as the warmer weather pushes in, so do the cravings for the new seasons offerings. those light and bright palette cleansing flavours that seemed to have been designed by nature to help combat the sometimes punishing heat (i know, i live in london, but it's all relative, lol), and though we are not officially into summer, we may as well be, summer produce are beginning to roll in, much to every cook and seasonal food lovers delight; beets, peppers, corn, aubergine, peaches, strawberries, asparagus, apricots, figs, currants and one of my absolute favourite.....cherries. while doing the food shopping last week at my local sainsburys, i was overjoyed to see they had cherries in stock. I grabbed two punnet's and began to contemplate what i wanted to do with them, eat them straight from the punnet maybe?......well yes, certainly some of them were destined to be plucked from their stems and popped in my mouth, but i wanted to create something, nothing fussy, but something definitely suitable for the season, then i remembered i had earl grey tea, lady grey to be specific, my current tea fixation, with all its glorious bergamot and citrus notes, not that would be highly complimentary to cherries, so i tossed a few ideas around on how i could marry the two and came up with a no fuss easy to prepare combination.......panna cotta and cherry sauce. scroll on down to the bottom, beyond the images to get the recipe.
happy almost summer loves.
cornish clotted cream earl grey panna cotta with cherry sauce
400 mls un-homogenised milk/whole milk/semi-skimmed milk
175 grams cornish clotted cream
70 grams golden caster sugar
6 gelatine leaves
1 - 2 teaspoons earl grey tea leaves/ 1
1 teaspoon vanilla bean paste/1 vanilla bean pod with seeds scraped out
over low to medium heat, gently heat the milk. add tea leaves (do not allow the milk to come to a simmer yet) stir gently to infuse the milk with the tea leaves, after a minute (you can infuse the tea leaves longer if you wish) strain the tea from the milk and return it to the heat.
submerge the gelatine leaves in cold water and leave to soak for 5 minutes. add the vanilla pod and seeds or paste to the milk, stir in the sugar and allow the milk mixture to come to a gentle simmer all while stirring to help the sugar to dissolve.
add the clotted cream to the milk and sugar mixture, stirring once again until well incorporated. Remove from the heat.
remove the gelatine leaves from the water, squeeze out any excess water and add them to the milk mixture. Stir to dissolve. Allow mixture to cool before pouring into your ideal mould. I used dariole mould but you can use ramekins or jars (not jars with small necks though)
refrigerate for 4 hours before eating
400 grams pitted fresh cherries
2 tablespoon lemon juice
4 - 5 tablespoons sugar
2 teaspoons cornstarch
5 tablespoons water
2 tsp cornstarch
combine all the ingredients in a small sauce pan, mix well and cook over low to medium heat until the cherries soften and all the liquid comes together to make a silky shiny sticky sauce. you can adjust the water by adding a further tablespoon or 2. You can also adjust the sweetness to your liking by adding or taking away a tablespoon of sugar.