By Chef Ella Freyinger

April 2021

8 Servings

'

I am a salt lover, through and through. Throughout my life I have chosen the popcorn over chocolate for movie snacks, potato chips over gummies at a friends house and savory salad with a sunny side up egg over fruity oatmeal for breakfast. Dessert? I’ll have another order of the appetizer. This panna cotta has become my exception to my savory over sweets desires. Tart and juicy cherries with creamy and tangy custard topped off with crunchy and spicy bits of brittle. I learned to make panna cotta from soured milk in the kitchen of a dear friend in Florence, where it has stuck with me since. It is painfully simple to make and will please even the saltiest of your bunch. 

Ingredients

  • FOR THE MUSTARD SEED BRITTLE:
  • 2 tbsp cane sugar
  • 2 tbsp water
  • 2 tbsp mustard seeds
  • FOR THE CHERRIES:
  • 2 pints cherries, halved and pitted
  • 1 tbsp FE honey
  • 1 tsp champagne vinegar
  • Sea salt
  • FOR THE PANNA COTTA:
  • 1 packet unflavored gelatin
  • ⅔ cup granulated sugar
  • 2 ½ cups heavy cream, divided
  • 2 ¾ cups buttermilk
  • Sea salt

Steps

  • FOR THE MUSTARD SEED BRITTLE:
  • Place the sugar and water in a small saucepan over medium heat. When the sugar dissolves, add the mustard seeds and cook until the sugar becomes a medium amber color. Pour onto a silpat and let cool completely. Once cooled, break into small chunks. 
  • FOR THE CHERRIES:
  • Add the cherries, honey, champagne vinegar and a pinch of sea salt to a bowl. Toss to combine. Leave at room temperature for at least 1 hour or overnight. 
  • FOR THE PANNA COTTA:
  • Warm ½ cup of heavy cream over low heat. If the cream is too hot it will deactivate the gelatin and your panna cotta will not properly set. Remove from the heat and add gelatin and sugar. Stir until the sugar has completely dissolved. Add the remaining cream and buttermilk, whisk to combine. 
  • FOR ASSEMBLY:
  • Evenly divide the cherries among 12 glasses or ramekins. Then evenly divide the panna cotta mixture into each glass, over the cherries. Place into the fridge and chill overnight.
  • To serve, top with mustard seed brittle and any edible flowers. 
  • Enjoy!