Unlike the traditional panna cotta which is comprised mainly of cream, this version consists mostly of yoghurt. Yoghurt boasts all the nutrients offered in milk, but in condensed form. The average small tub of yoghurt (approx. 200g) contains all the calcium of a 250ml glass of milk. Protein is also utilised to a greater extent when consumed in yoghurt rather than milk, AND yoghurt is a great source of beneficial gut bacteria or probiotics. When selecting your yoghurts make sure you watch out for those containing aBc cultures, which help to restore your gut microflora thereby aiding digestion, immune function and vitamin and mineral synthesis. Our gut microflora can get upset by illness and sometimes lifestyle factors, and we can replenish friendly bacteria by consuming aBc culture-containing yoghurts. This recipe is one delicious way to incorporate more yoghurt into your diet, and it is perfect for dessert on a warm night or even as a healthy breakfast.
Fortunate as I am, my mum works at Paris Creek – an organic and biodynamic dairy manufacturer. Hence our fridge is stocked endlessly with yoghurt. Any type of yoghurt works well in panna cotta, I can barely tell the difference compared to cream. My favourite is using the bush honey Paris Creek yoghurt mixed in with a spoonful of vanilla extract and topped with seasonal or preserved fruits.
4 tsp gelatine powder
2 cups low fat milk (I use Paris Greek organic and biodynamic reduced fat milk)
1 tbsp honey
2 tsp vanilla extract
500g Paris Creek bush honey yoghurt
Seasonal fruit of your choice – passionfruit, strawberries, rasperries, peaches and nectarines all work exceptionally well – as do poached peaches and quinces in the colder months!
Place 4 tbsp cold water into a bowl and sprinle gelatine over the surface evenly – let stand for ~10 minutes and allow to form a gel. Place milk, honey and vanilla extract into a saucepan over medium heat, stirring until the mixture simmers. Remove from the heat and add the gelatine and water mix, then whisk until the gelatine has dissolved. Allow to cool for ~10 minutes. Whisk the yoghurt into the gelatine mixture until it is well combined and no lumps of yoghurt remain. Spray 8 x jars or ramekin dishes with oil and divide the mixture between the moulds. Refrigerate the panna cottas for 2-3 hours until set. When set, top with fruit and serve!