Mango Panna Cotta with Salted Pistachio Brittle

Delicious, and simple pure mango flavor. This is the sort of recipe that easily adapts to whatever dietary needs you or your guests may have.

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I haven’t made a panna cotta in years. It used to be my go to, easy company dessert but then I got bored with it. If you’ve not made or eaten panna cotta before I highly recommend it. It’s an easy Italian custard sort of dish, but a custard minus the eggs, which I suppose doesn’t really make it custard after all. Actually, in reality, Panna Cotta is a form of Blancmange. Blancmange, a pudding is traditionally made with milk or cream, sugar and gelatine. It’s constantly being spoon fed to swooning invalids in 19th century novels which is where I first ran across it. In novels there seems to be nothing that a little blancmange can’t make better.

Mango Panna Cotta with Salted Pistachio Brittle
 
Dessert makes one feel better no matter how one's day goes, or where. A fast dessert is even better. A dessert that can be made gluten free and even vegan, better yet.Thus, the Mango Panna Cotta.
Author:
Recipe Type: Dessert
Cuisine: Italian
Ingredients
  • 1 and ½ cups of whipping cream
  • 2 and ¼ tsp of gelatine or the equivalent in agar agar
  • 1 and ½ cups of mango puree plus ½ cup extra mango puree for Mango coulis
  • 15 green cardamom pods
  • ⅓ cup chopped pistachios
  • Sea Salt to taste
  • 1 cup of sugar
Brittle
  • 1 cup of sugar
  • ⅓ cup of chopped roasted unsalted pistachios
  • 1 Tbs large flake sea salt
Instructions
  1. Puree fresh or defrosted frozen mango.
  2. When the mango is pureed, set aside ½ cup for the coulis.
  3. Crush the green cardamom pods in a mortar and pestle.
  4. Remove the seeds and throw the pods away. Crush the seeds and grind them up.
  5. Pour 1 and ½ cups of whipping cream into a small pot.
  6. Sprinkle the gelatine or agar agar oven the cream in the pot.
  7. Let the gelatine "bloom" on the cream. This takes between 1 and 2 minutes. When the surface of the cream becomes wrinkled and puffy, the gelatine has "bloomed" and is ready to use.
  8. Whisk the gelatine into the whipping cream so that it's blended.
  9. Add in the ground up cardamom seeds.
  10. If you are using any sugar, now is the time to add it in. (This will depend on the sweetness of the mango you are adding later. My mango puree was very sweet so I didn't feel it needed any sugar, this is a matter of taste.)
  11. Warm the milk or cream, (sugar if you're using it) and gelatine so that everything is dissolved. DO NOT BOIL. Take a bit of the mixture and rub it between your fingers. If there is no graininess then all is good and the gelatine is thoroughly dissolved.
  12. When the mixture is warm, mix in 1 and ½ cups of mango puree.
  13. Pour the mango panna cotta mixture into 5 small ramekins and pop them into the fridge to chill for about 2 hours.
  14. Thoroughly puree the extra half cup of mango so that it's very very smooth and set it aside in the fridge to chill. This is the coulis.
  15. You can serve these right out of the ramekins or unmold them easily by running a sharp knife around the rim, then dipping the bottom of the ramekin briefly into a bowl of hot water. Unmold them onto a dessert plate.
  16. Decorate them with a bit of the mango coulis, top with a shard of Salted Pistachio Brittle.
Brittle
  1. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper or a silicone baking mat. Set it aside.
  2. Pan roast the pistachios until they're lightly toasted.
  3. Let them cool, chop them and set them aside.
  4. Add 1 cup of sugar to a skillet.
  5. Turn the heat to medium and let the sugar start to lightly caramelize. Don't stir the sugar but allow it to melt and turn light amber in color. As you can see, I changed pans as the sugar needs a large pan so that it all fits in one smooth layer.
  6. As the sugar starts to melt at the edges of the pan, take a heat-proof spatula and push it toward the center of the pan.
  7. When the caramel has liquified and burned amber, CAREFULLY pour it onto the parchment paper or silpat mats in long streaks.
  8. Spread the sugar out moving quickly.
  9. Scatter the pistachios on top of the hot caramel.
  10. Add the sea salt flakes.
  11. Let it cool and set. This does not take long! If you're not using it right away, store it in a cool dry place....not the fridge. Break off the pieces you plan on using and decorate the dessert as you wish.
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