Over Christmas, it makes sense to prepare desserts that require minimal effort yet still deliver that ‘wow’ factor. Pannacotta certainly ticks all the right boxes – it’s easy to make, cheap and delectable, with a silky smooth texture that makes it one of the world’s sexiest desserts.
2 medium sheets leaf gelatine (11 x 7.5cm)
250ml double cream
50g caster sugar
15ml dark rum, or to taste
20g caster sugar
275ml pomegranate juice
Block of good-quality dark chocolate, for grating
1. Soak the gelatine in a shallow dish of cold water for a few minutes. Meanwhile, put the cream, sugar, milk and rum into a saucepan and slowly bring to a simmer. Heat gently for 30 seconds, then remove the pan from the heat. Taste for flavour, adding a little more rum if you wish.
2. Squeeze the gelatine leaves to remove excess water, then add them to the cream mixture and stir until fully dissolved. Tip the mixture into a jug.
3. Now pour into four individual glass dishes, leaving enough room for the glaze. Leave to cool, then place the glasses in the fridge to set for at least two hours, or overnight if preparing ahead.
4. To make the pomegranate glaze, heat a dry frying pan.Tip the sugar into the hot pan followed by the pomegranate juice. Bring to the boil and allow to bubble for 10–15 minutes, until thickened to a sticky, syrupy glaze. Pour into a small jug and leave to cool completely.
5. Pop the chocolate in the freezer for 10–15 minutes before serving. Pour the cooled pomegranate glaze on top of the chilled pannacottas. Take the chocolate from the freezer and draw a small straight-edged knife along the flat side of the bar to make curled shavings. Top each pannacotta with chocolate shavings to serve.
Christmas with Gordon by Gordon Ramsay is published by Quadrille.