Traditionally made using milk, cream, gelatin and lots of sugar (the dessert is Italian, and the translation is literally ‘cooked cream’); panna cotta is probably the last thing on your mind if you’re looking to eat healthy for yourself and the planet. This one however, is free from animals, refined sugar and actually uses a type of seaweed in place of the gelatin! (Don’t worry, it doesn’t taste of seaweed at all).
This dessert is perfect for Summer evenings served with fresh berries and a little maple syrup or honey for non-vegans swirled on top. Find yourself some fancy-looking moulds to shape the mixture and you’ll create something that looks special but takes no time at all to prepare.
- 1 can full-fat coconut milk
- 2 tbsp agar agar powder or flakes
- 2 tbsp honey or maple syrup
- 1 tsp vanilla extract (or vanilla bean if you have some handy)
- 1 handful frozen or fresh berries
- Pour coconut milk, sweetener and vanilla into a pan
- Add the agar agar powder, stir and leave for about 5 minutes to absorb the liquid
- Heat everything for about 5 minutes until it becomes warm and the powder dissolves (you may need to wait a little longer if using agar agar flakes)
- Remove from head and pour into individual moulds – if you don’t have any moulds you can always pour the mixture into a glass or cup and leave it in there to serve.
- Drop a few berried into each mould or cup
- Place in the fridge and leave for at least an hour to set – these are best left over night.
When you’re read to serve, remove from the moulds if you used them and top with your choice of runny sweetener (I used raw honey), coconut flakes and berries.
Enjoy, and save this recipe for when you need to make something tasty, fancy but easy….
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