Earl Grey and lavender panna cotta
I have been thinking about panna cotta with Earl Grey tea ever since I saw it on a menu at the Medicine Garden in Cobham when it first opened. I didn’t try it that day and eventually curiosity got the better of me, so here is my version which includes lavender. Culinary lavender adds an interesting aromatic flavour note with a sophisticated twist. Ingredients
400ml semi-skimmed milk
600ml double cream
15ml culinary lavender
Three 15ml spoons honey, lavender if possible
Five leaves gelatine
Three Earl Grey teabags
Fresh berries, honey and fresh lavender for garnishMethod
• Place eight ramekins on a tray that will fit in a fridge.
• Pour 400ml semi-skimmed milk and 600ml double cream into a saucepan. Add one 15ml spoon of culinary lavender and bring gently to the boil with three 15ml spoons of honey – use lavender honey if possible. Meanwhile, place five leaves of gelatine in a bowl of water and soak for five minutes.
• Once the cream mixture has come to the boil, remove the pan from the heat. Remove the gelatine from the water, whisk into the hot cream and add three Earl Grey teabags. Allow the teabags to infuse for about ten minutes, then remove them from the cream mixture, squeezing gently to extract the flavour.
• Pour the cream mixture through a fine-mesh sieve into a large pouring jug. Pour the mixture evenly between the ramekins, allow to cool slightly, then cover the tray in cling wrap. Chill overnight or until set in the fridge.
• Serve in the ramekins, but I prefer to turn them out and garnish with some fresh berries, a drizzle of honey and a sprig of fresh lavender.