Recipe: Vanilla Bean Panna Cotta with Apricot Gelée

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Panna Cotta, an Italian dessert of silky, sweetened cream set with gelatin, is all at once simple, classic and elegant.  It is, at its best, subtle, not overly sweet, and the perfect way to end a meal on a light and refreshing note.
Panna cotta comes together quickly and can be molded in any type of vessels you choose -- from ramekins to demitasse, martini glasses to mason jars.  I like to compliment my panna cotta with a thin layer of gelée -- a gelatin stabilized glaze made from fresh fruit.  Apricots are in season right now, and are bursting with summer sweetness, so I chose to do an apricot gelée.  You can use my recipe with any type of fruit you'd like.  
Here are some photos of panna cottas I've made in the past with a variety of gelées and vessels:
Vanilla Panna Cotta with a Honey Gelée and Bee Pollen
Lemon Panna Cotta, no gelée
Meyer-Lemon Panna Cotta, Strawberry-Rhubarb Gelee

I like to decorate my desserts with edible flowers, especially in summer and springtime. My theme fo…

Crafty Food: Easy Bento Box Butterflies and Rice


I love finding news ways to combine crafting with cooking!
This simple and healthy snack  gets a touch of creative whimsy
from toasted seaweed and a craft punch!


Rice balls made with half white and half brown rice are a popular snack and lunchbox item at my house.  We've all become fans of the snack packs of toasted seaweed that have popped up in stores like Trader Joes and Costco.    



So, for lunch the other day, I decided to combine the two -- using my butterfly punch from Martha Stewart Crafts to make delicate seaweed butterflies with which to embellish the rice balls. 

 

My family loved them.  The girls are excited to have them in their school lunches.  I think they'd be a lovely addition to a tea party or as a kid-friendly finger-food for a potluck. 


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