Nicole Waxman, Pastry Chef, The Spiced Pear Restaurant, Newport
This is my home version of a wonderful summer dessert we serve at the restaurant along with a blackberry sponge cake. You can substitute angel food cake but the panna cotta with its sublime green hue can stand alone with the purple berries. What a colorful basket from the farmers’ market!
Sweet Pea Panna Cotta:
3 cups heavy cream
2 cups fresh green peas (or frozen if needed)
1 packet gelatin
3 tablespoons water
1/2 cup granulated sugar
1 1/2 cups fresh, whole, washed blackberries, divided
2 tablespoons granulated sugar (enough to coat the blackberries)
Juice from 1/2 lemon
Fresh mint for garnish (optional)
Bring cream and peas to a boil in a medium saucepan and remove from heat.
Blend in a blender on medium speed until smooth. Strain through a fine-mesh sieve.
Place gelatin powder in a small bowl with 3 tablespoons water and let soften.
Return pea and cream mixture to saucepan, add sugar and bring to a simmer. As soon as sugar has dissolved, remove from heat. Add softened gelatin to the mixture and stir until smooth.
Pour into 8 (6-ounce) ramekins or molds (leaving 1/4 inch space at the top) and place on a baking sheet, covered with plastic wrap in the refrigerator until set. (Approximately 4 hours or overnight.)
Toss 1 cup blackberries with sugar and lemon juice in a bowl and let sit 1 hour. To serve, unmold panna cotta on 8 individual dessert plates. Garnish with a spoonful of macerated berries. Top with fresh berries, garnish with a mint leaf and serve. Serves 8 as a dessert.
WINE PAIRING: 2014 Meinklang Burgenland White, Austria. This Austrian beauty is a blend of Gruner Veltliner, Muskat and Welschriesling (Riesling). Fruit forward with some residual sugar, it is abundant with flavors of citrus and rose petals with a touch of minerality on the finish. The wine is rich enough to stand up to the complex flavors of sweet peas and blackberries and its slight sweetness will bring out the dessert’s sweeter flavors.—Jessica Grantiero, The Savory Grape, East Greenwich