Originally I wanted to make SA the panna cotta and Florentines for Valentine's day, but life got in the way and I ended up procrastinating on the panna cotta.
The first Florentines I made I ended up opting to skip the chocolate and instead used melted cinnamon chips between the two cookies. AMAZINGLY good. Buttery, cinnamony and crunchy, some of my favorite traits in a dessert.
2/3 cup (160 ml) (150 gm) (5.3 oz) unsalted butter
2 cups (480 ml) (160 gm) (5 2/3 oz) quick oats
1 cup (240 ml) (230 gm) (8 oz) granulated sugar
2/3 cup (160 ml) (95 gm) (3⅓ oz) plain (all purpose) flour
1/4 cup (60 ml) dark corn syrup
1/4 cup (60 ml) whole milk
1 tsp (5 ml) vanilla extract
pinch of salt
1½ cups (360 ml) (250 gm) (9 oz) cinnamon chips
Preheat oven to moderately hot 375°F (190°C) (gas mark 5). Prepare your baking sheet with silpat or parchment paper. Melt butter in a medium saucepan, then remove from the heat. To the melted butter add oats, sugar, flour, corn syrup, milk, vanilla, and salt. Mix well. Drop a tablespoon full, three inches (75 mm) apart, onto your prepared baking sheet. Flatten slightly with the back of your tablespoon, or use a spatula. Bake in preheated oven for 6-8 minutes, until cookies are golden brown. Cool completely on the baking sheets. While the cookies are cooling melt your cinnamon chips until smooth either in the microwave (1 1/2 minutes), or stove top (in a double boiler, or a bowl that fits atop a saucepan filled with a bit of water, being sure the water doesn't touch the bottom of the bowl). Peel the cookies from the silpat or parchment and place face down on a wire rack set over a sheet of wax/parchment paper (to keep counters clean). Spread a tablespoon of cinnamon on the bottom/flat side of your cookie, sandwiching another (flat end) cookie atop the cinnamon.
Then we had a little dinner get together. It was completely on the fly and I just served soup so I decided to really impress with the dessert. It was time to bust out the panna cotta.
I ended up making a coffee scented cinnamon panna cotta with dulce de leche and white chocolate Florentines. I wanted them to taste like caramel macchiatos. I think I succeeded and they were well received by the friends we had over.
Coffee scented Cinnamon Panna Cotta
1 cup whole milk1 tablespoon (one packet) unflavored powdered gelatin
3 cups whipping cream
2 tablespoon granulated sugar
pinch of salt
1 teaspoon of cinnamon
8 coffee beans or 1 tsp. instant coffee granules
Pour the milk into a bowl or pot and sprinkle gelatin evenly and thinly over the milk (make sure the bowl/pot is cold by placing the bowl/pot in the refrigerator for a few minutes before you start making the Panna Cotta). Let stand for 5 minutes to soften the gelatin.
Pour the milk and coffee beans or granules into the saucepan/pot and place over medium heat on the stove. Heat this mixture until it is hot, but not boiling, about five minutes.
Next, add the cream,cinnamon, sugar, and pinch of salt. Making sure the mixture doesn't boil, continue to heat and stir occasionally until the sugar and honey have dissolved 5-7 minutes.
Remove from heat, allow it to sit for a few minutes to cool slightly. Then pour into the glass or ramekin.
Refrigerate at least 6 hours or overnight. Add garnishes and serve.
For the panna cotta I simply layered it with a layer of dulce de leche at the bottom, panna cotta and then more dulce de leche on top. For homemade dulce de leche please use this recipe.
Blog-checking lines: The February 2011 Daring Bakers’ challenge was hosted by Mallory from A Sofa in the Kitchen. She chose to challenge everyone to make Panna Cotta from a Giada De Laurentiis recipe and Nestle Florentine Cookies.