Daring Bakers – Panna Cotta and Florentine Cookies

This is my first time doing Daring Bakers, and it definitely was out of my comfort zone! I had generally overlooked panna cotta as something I wouldn’t really be that interested in. I was completely wrong. We were encouraged to play with flavor combinations, so I layered Bailey’s panna cotta, coffee gelee, and chocolate panna cotta with delicious results.

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In addition to the panna cotta, we made Florentine cookies. These were not my favorite cookies on their own, but combined with the panna cotta they were quite delicious.

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A word of warning: even with using unsweetened chocolate, the chocolate layer in the panna cotta was almost unbearably rich. This may be remedied by cutting back the sugar or chocolate content, but at this point I would probably just look for another recipe. I’ll let you know if I find one that I like. If you choose to use this chocolate panna cotta recipe, try to keep the portions small.

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We had friends over to help us taste test (this made a lot of panna cotta, so four of us only ended up eating half of it). The consensus was that the chocolate was really rich, the Bailey’s panna cotta was good, and the coffee gelee was actually the star of the evening. Put together, the flavors worked very well.

Bailey’s Panna Cotta (adapted from Daring Bakers)
1 cup whole milk
1/4 oz (1 packet) unflavored powdered gelatin
2 3/4 cups whipping cream
1/3 cup honey
1 tbsp granulated sugar
pinch of salt
1/2 cup Bailey’s Irish Cream

Pour the milk into a saucepan and sprinkle the gelatin over the surface of the milk to form a thin, even layer. Let stand 5 minutes.

Over medium heat, bring the milk to steaming (but not boiling), about 5 minutes. Add the remaining ingredients, and continue to heat until the sugar and honey are dissolved, whisking occasionally.

Remove from the heat, allow to cool at room temperature for 10-20 minutes, then cover and refrigerate in the desired glasses until firm, at least 6 hours.

Chocolate Panna Cotta (adapted from Daring Bakers) (I made half of this recipe)
1 cup whole milk
1/4 oz (1 packet) unflavored powdered gelatin
2 cups whipping cream
1/2 cup granulated sugar
1 tsp vanilla extract
5 oz unsweetened chocolate

Pour the milk into a bowl and sprinkle the gelatin over the surface of the milk to form a thin, even layer. Let stand 5 minutes.

In a saucepan over medium heat, bring the cream, sugar, and vanilla to a boil. Whisk in the chocolate and continue whisking until melted. Whisk in the milk mixture until dissolved.

Remove from the heat, allow to cool at room temperature for 10-20 minutes, then cover and refrigerate until firm, at least 6 hours.

Coffee Gelee (adapted from Daring Bakers)
1/4 cup hot water
1/2 cup granulated sugar
2 tbsp cold water
1/8 oz (1/2 packet, 1 1/2 tsp) unflavored powdered gelatin
2 cups strong, hot coffee
2 tsp vanilla extract

In a saucepan, bring the hot water and granulated sugar to a boil and stir until the sugar is completely dissolved.

Meanwhile, sprinkle the gelatin over the cold water and allow to stand 5 minutes.

Combine all ingredients (the sugar syrup, the gelatin and cold water, the coffee, and the vanilla) in a metal bowl and stir until the gelatin is completely dissolved.

To Layer
In order to layer the panna cottas and gelee, create the first layer as indicated and refrigerate in your desired container. Once the layer has started to set up (it needs to be able to handle another layer on top without mixing), make the second layer. Bring the second layer to room temperature before gently spooning over the first layer. Repeat for the third layer.

15 thoughts on “Daring Bakers – Panna Cotta and Florentine Cookies”

  1. I LOVE Bailey’s so I had to come leave a comment. I never would have thought you were a first time Daring Baker if I hadn’t read through your notes. You did a fantastic job with the challenge. Congrats!

  2. Welcome to Daring Bakers! You did an awesome job with your challenge. Visually it jumped right out at me and I love the flavor combinations. Thanks for the critique also. I personally don’t think there is such a thing as too rich a chocolate :-) but I cede that I may be a minority on that.

  3. Chocolate, Bailey’s and coffee? Wow – that sounds like an AMAZING combination, and it looks absolutely beautiful!! Your florentines look amazing, too, but I absolutely love the rolled ones in the panna cotta cups – excellent presentation! Very well done!!

  4. Your panna cotta looks absolutely gorgeous! The layering and flavour/colour combination is so perfect. And the florentines are golden and lacy. Well done on your first challenge, look forward to reading your blog! xx

  5. Wow! Great idea to use baileys – sounds delicious. Love the flavour combination and beautiful presentation. Great job on the challenge!

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