Panna Cotta with Ripe Mango

This is one of the most sensual desserts I know. It's a cross between soft ice cream and rich custard. Serve it with dicings of ripe mango.

Cook to Cook: Use organic cream if possible and be sure the sour cream contains only cream and culture, no other additives (Daisy is one brand to look for). This recipe unmolds with a soft, creamy finish. For a firmer panna cotta, increase the gelatin to 1 teaspoon.

Wine Suggestion: a rich, sweet red Recioto della Valpolicella Classico La Roggia by Fratelli Speri.

  • 3/4 teaspoons unflavored gelatin
  • 1 tablespoons cold water
  • 1 1/2 cups heavy whipping cream
  • 1/4 cup sugar, or more to taste
  • dash of salt
  • 3/4 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1/2 cup sour cream
  • 1 ripe mango, diced


1. Sprinkle the gelatin over the cold water. Let stand for 5 minutes. In a 2-quart saucepan, warm the cream with the sugar, salt, and vanilla over medium-high heat. Do not let it boil. Stir in the gelatin until thoroughly dissolved. Take the cream off the heat and cool about 5 minutes.

2. Put the sour cream in a medium bowl. Gently whisk in the warm cream a little at a time until smooth. Taste for sweetness. It may need another teaspoon of sugar. Rinse 4 2/3-cup ramekins, custard cups, or coffee cups with cold water. Fill each one three-quarters full with the cream. Chill 4 to 24 hours.

3. To serve, either unmold by packing the molds in hot towels and then turning each out onto a dessert plate, or serve in their containers. Serve with diced ripe mango.
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4 servings
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