Sunday, December 19, 2010

Mango passion fruit panna cotta verrines

I'm a huge passion fruit lover. Singapore's a tropical country with loads of fruits available at all times of the year as we import a lot of fruits from all over the world (from neighbouring Asian countries like Malaysia, Thailand, and China to further countries such as USA and Australia etc). Ironically, I think I started noticing passion fruit only when I was studying in Australia. As I do my own groceries when I was studying there,  I noticed immediately when the wrinkly brown fruits started appearing at the fruit stall. I remember buying pre-packaged packs of six/eight passion fruits and scooping out the yellowy pulp and eating it with my granola and yogurt for breakfast.  The sour-y tang of the passion fruit, and the crunchy bite that the seeds always perked up my simple breakfast meal.

I've been on the look out for passion fruit puree for the longest time ever, and when I finally bought a tub of frozen passion fruit puree, I was so excited at the possible desserts I could make - macarons, ice creams, mousses etc etc. After browsing through all my bookmarked recipes, I finally settled on making mango passion fruit panna cotta verrines, inspired by Vi's (L' Atelier Vi) version here.

Mango passion fruit panna cotta verrines
Thai mangoes; torching mangoes cubes; verrines; wiped clean...

In case you were wondering, of course I had fun with my newly bought blow torch. ;)

Passion fruit puree; verrine layers

I made some amendments to the recipe. As I didn't have crème fraîche on hand, I decided to try another recipe for panna cotta that uses cream instead, as I normally do have cream in the fridge. I decided on David Lebovitz's recipe for vanilla panna cotta. And I replaced the mango puree used for the mousse layer with passion fruit puree.

Oh, and for the garnishes, since I had made some mini macarons (lemon and chocolate) some time ago and I wanted to test out whether the macarons will keep in the freezer, I thought that it was an appropriate time to test the lemon ones. So I removed a few mini macarons from the freezer, and sandwiched them with some Korean yuzu tea drink (which has a marmalade sorta consistency) and propped them alongside the torched mango cubes.

I had leftover mousse and coulis so I poured them into two shooter glasses and topped them with the torched mango cubes and macarons too.


Mango passion fruit panna cotta verrines (adapted from Vi and David Lebotivz)
(makes 6 verrines)

Vanilla panna cotta
250ml whipping cream (35-36% fat)
25g sugar
1/2 tsps of vanilla extract
1 tsp powdered gelatine
22ml cold water

Sprinkle the gelatin over the cold water in a medium-sized bowl and let stand 5 to 10 minutes. Heat the cream and sugar in a saucepan over med-low heat. Once sugar has dissolved, remove from heat and stir in vanilla extract. You're only heating it to dissolve the sugar, don't overheat it. Pour the warm mixture over the gelatine and stir until the gelatine has completely dissolved. Allow mixture to cool down before dividing out into your ramekins. Chill for a few hours (or overnight).

Mango Gelée with Mango Cubes
150g fresh mango, diced
100g mango purée
25g granulated sugar
2g sheet gelatine

Warm half of the mango purée with the sugar in a medium saucepan over low heat. In the meantime, soak the sheet gelatine in ice water. Remove saucepan from heat once sugar completely dissolved. Squeeze off excess water and add the softened gelatine to the warm mango purée. Add the rest of the purée and diced mangoes and mix well. Let it cool to room temperature then spoon the mixture on top of the chilled panna cotta to about 2/3 of the height of the glasses/cups. Let it set in the refrigerator, about 30 minutes to 1 hour.

Passion fruit mousse
150g passion fruit purée
30g granulated sugar
3½ g sheet gelatine
120g whipping cream, whipped to soft peaks

Warm half of the purée with the sugar in a medium saucepan over low heat. In the meantime, soak the sheet gelatine in ice water. Remove saucepan from heat once sugar completely dissolved. Squeeze off excess water and add the softened gelatine to the warm purée and stir until completely dissolved. Add the rest of the purée; stir to combine then let it cool to room temperature.

In a mixing bowl, whisk the heavy cream until soft peaks then using a rubber spatula; fold the whipped cream into the purée base until fully incorporated (no more white streak). Pour this mousse on top of the mango gelée, and let it set in the refrigerator, about 1 hour.

Mango Coulis
100g mango purée
20g granulated sugar

Warm half of the mango purée with the sugar in a medium saucepan over low heat. Remove saucepan from heat once sugar completely dissolved. Add the rest of the purée; stir to combine then let it cool to room temperature. Pour it on top of the mango mousse layers, swirl the cup until it covers the mousse completely. Decorate with torched mango cubes and mini citrus macarons, or as desired.

Verdict? The family all made a face after eating the verrine cups. They found the cups too sour for their liking. Probably my bad, cos passion fruit puree is much sour-er than mango puree. I doubled the sugar, but I guess I should have added in more. Then again, I like sour-ish stuff, so I thought that the passion fruit  mousse taster fine. But a note to self, in future, to make passion fruit more palatable for the family (who eats my desserts), I shall add more sugar to suit their tastes. Haha.

I liked the overall dessert, but I think it should be consumed only after a full day of refrigeration for the layers to really firm up. When I ate a verrine the day I completed it, the layers melded together in a pool of tropical sunshine goo and though delicous, I couldn't really taste each layer on its own (if you get what I mean). When I ate another cup the next day, the layers had firmed up considerably and I got to taste and savour each distinct layer bit by bit. Yums.

The panna cotta taste and texture was perfect. I think I shall be making this again, and use vanilla bean the next time. I thought that the mango gelée layer itself was also a tad sour, perhaps cos I used fresh mangoes for the puree, and the mangoes have yet to ripen?

The macaron test, hmmm well, cos the dessert was a "wet" dessert, after taking time to snap my photos, the macaron had kinda gone soft already cos it was in contact with the mango coulis layer. But I liked how cute the petite shells look on top of the desserts! Haha, for once, aesthetic wins over taste for these macarons!

I can't wait to make verrines again cos they're really cute and doesn't require me to switch on the oven. Perhaps after the rainy cool spell that we're having, hmmm, say after February? It's all about warm cakes, cupcakes, cookies, tarts or puddings for this cool weather. :)

9 comments:

  1. OH Yes.. panna cotta... my fav.. I love the fact you took an extra step and torched the fruit.. love it

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  2. very pretty.. passionfruit and yogurt are great together (especially for breakfast or snacks lol)!

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  3. any excuse to play with the torch hee (:

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  4. Mmmmm, yummy! It's beautiful and delicious at the same time!

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  5. So pretty! I'm tempted to get one of those puree boxes too...so handy! How do you do the slanting sides? Yummy!

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  6. haha get them they are so convenient! i can foresee myself buying other flavours...er once i finish my passionfruit one first tho hehe. ah the slanting sides are easy, i place the cups into a muffin tin, tilt them, then pour the panna cotta into it. then i put it into the fridge for it to set. super easy rights? (:

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