Panna Cotta

Panna Cotta

  • Servings: 6-8
  • Difficulty: Easy

Panna Cotta is one of those special desserts we have been serving at dinner parties for several years. It tastes heavenly, is refreshing, incredibly smooth and creamy, not too sweet, naturally gluten-free, and loved by everyone who has ever eaten it. Preparing it the day before makes this recipe so easy. Your family and guests will love it.

Ingredients

  • 2 tsp (1 packet) unflavored gelatin powder
  • 3 Tablespoons cold water
  • 3 cups heavy cream
  • 2 cups plain whole-milk yogurt
  • 1½ tsp pure vanilla extract
  • 1 vanilla bean
  • 3/4 cup sugar
  • 8 cups sliced fresh strawberries or raspberries
  • 5 Tablespoons balsamic vinegar glaze
  • 2 Tablespoons sugar
  • 1/2 tsp ground black pepper
  • freshly grated lemon zest, for garnish

Directions

  • In a small bowl sprinkle the gelatin over 3 Tablespoons of cold water.
  • Stir and set aside for 10 minutes to allow gelatin to dissolve.
  • In the meantime, in a medium bowl whisk together 1½ cups of heavy cream, yogurt & vanilla extract.
  • Split the vanilla bean and use the tip of a knife to scrape the seeds into the cream.
  • Heat the remaining 1½cups of cream and the sugar in a small saucepan and bring to a simmer over medium heat. Remove from heat & add the softened gelatin to the hot cream and stir to dissolve.
  • Pour the hot cream/gelatin mixture into the cold cream/yogurt mixture and stir to combine.
  • Place the empty ramekins on a baking sheet. Pour into 8 (6-8 oz) ramekins or custard cups. Refrigerate uncovered until cold, about 1 hour. When the Panna Cottas are thoroughly chilled, cover with plastic wrap and refrigerate overnight.
  • 30 minutes to 1 hr before serving, combine the fresh strawberries or raspberries, balsamic vinegar glaze, sugar & pepper. Set aside at room temperature.
  • When ready to serve, surround the Panna Cotta with the fruit/balsamic mixture then dust with freshly grated lemon zest on top & serve.


Note: This recipe has been adapted from Ina Garten.

Did you make this recipe? We would love to hear from you. Please leave us a comment below or Tag @twinsinthekitchen on Instagram and hashtag it #twiinsinthekitchen.

 

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Date Nut Bread

Date Nut Bread

  • Servings: 1 loaf (about 16 slices)
  • Difficulty: Easy

I have been making this date nut bread every Christmas morning for what seems like forever! Originally I got this recipe from my longtime friend, Linda O'Donnell. We were next door neighbors and best friends since 1970. A lot of baking went on between us during our children's youth. Every Christmas morning Gary & I would spread some cream cheese on a slice, grab a cup of coffee and watch the kids open presents. We absolutely love it.

Ingredients

  • 1 ½ cups chopped dates ( I use Sun Maid or Dole)
  • 1 ½ cups boiling water
  • 2 Tbsp butter
  • 1 cup dark brown sugar
  • 1 egg, well beaten
  • 2 ½ cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 tsp baking soda
  • 1 cup chopped nuts (pecans or walnuts – nuts may be omitted)
  • 1 tsp cream of tartar
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • dash of cinnamon

Directions

  • Preheat oven to 350ºF.
  • Grease a 9¼ x 5¼ x 2¾ loaf pan with butter or cooking spray.
  • In a large mixing bowl, mix the butter & brown sugar with dates.
  • Pour the boiling water over the date mixture and cool.
  • When cool, add beaten egg & dry ingredients. Beat well.
  • Add nuts &  vanilla. Stir well.
  • Bake in loaf pan for 1 hour & 10 minutes or until knife comes out clean from center.
  • When slightly cool, remove from loaf pan and continue cooling on rack.
  • After completely cooled, cover in plastic wrap to keep moist.

Note: No need to wait for Christmas! Enjoy this anytime with cream cheese or butter spread on top.

Did you make this recipe? We would love to hear from you. Please leave us a comment below or Tag @twinsinthekitchen on Instagram and hashtag it #twiinsinthekitchen.


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Swiss Cake Roll with Chocolate Ganache – Award Winning

Teresa baked this delicious gluten-free cake to celebrate her bridge club’s October birthdays. Everyone loved it so much that Teresa never got a piece! Fortunately, her friend Judy was kind enough to give her a fork full. No one could believe it was gluten free!

Update: Barbara’s neighborhood had a Chili & Chocolate Cook Off on 2/22/19 and this delicious cake was the  winner for 2019! 

Servings: 10-12

Ingredients 

Cake:

  • 1/4 cup unsweetened Hershey’s® cocoa powder
  • 1/3 cup Bob’s Red Mill® Gluten-free 1 to 1 Baking Flour
  • 1/4 tsp salt
  • 1 tsp baking powder
  • 1/2 tsp Cafe Pilon® instant coffee freeze-dried
  • 4 eggs, separated
  • 1/2 cup sugar

Instructions for Cake

  1. Preheat oven to 425° F.
  2. Whisk egg whites until soft peaks form (don’t over-beat or they will dry out).
  3. In a large bowl beat the egg yolks with sugar until pale yellow, then mix in remaining dry ingredients until just combined.
  4. Fold in egg whites being careful not to deflate them by over-mixing.
  5. Pour batter into a greased, parchment-lined 17x12x1″ jelly-roll pan.
  6. Tap filled pan on counter several times to bring air bubbles to surface.
  7. Bake at 425° on the middle shelf for approximately 9 minutes, until set. Keep checking to make sure edges don’t burn.
  8. Allow the cake to cool in pan for 5-7 minutes and GENTLY roll the cake into a roll while still on the parchment and in the pan. (This should prevent the cake from cracking later when you reroll with the filling).
  9. Allow the roll to cool completely on a cake rack
  10. Make the whipped cream filling below.
  11. Unroll the cake carefully & spread filling across it. Reroll the cake once the filling is inside & place back on cooling rack.
  12. Prepare the ganache per instructions below.
  13. Pour the slightly cooled chocolate ganache over the cake roll & let stand to harden, then refrigerate

Whipped Cream Filling:

  • 2 cups heavy whipping cream
  • 1/4 cup sugar
  • 1/2 tsp vanilla extract
  • Deep mixing bowl & whisk attachment should be refrigerated before mixing.

Instructions for Whipped Cream Filling

  1. Beat the heavy cream, sugar, & vanilla in a cold bowl at high speed, scraping bowl often until high peaks form. Store in refrigerator until ready to fill cake roll.

 

Chocolate Ganache Icing

  • 14 ounces Nestle® Toll House semi-sweet chocolate chips
  • 3 Tablespoons espresso coffee ( I used freeze-dried mixed with hot water)
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • 1/4 cup confectioners sugar
  • 3/4 cups heavy cream
  • pinch of salt

Instructions for Chocolate Ganache Icing

  1. In a heavy saucepan, combine all ingredients & stir over very low heat.
  2. Just before the chocolate mixture is melted, remove from heat & stir until mixture is completely melted. It may appear curdled, but keep stirring or whisk vigorously till smooth.
  3. If too thick to pour, whisk in 1 Tablespoon at a time of hot water.
  4. Make sure ganache is somewhat cooled before pouring onto the cake.

We know this recipe seems like a great deal of work; however, it is done in steps & well worth it.

Did you make this recipe? We would love to hear from you. Please leave us a comment below or Tag @twinsinthekitchen on Instagram and hashtag it #twiinsinthekitchen.

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