Secret Recipe Club: Lemon Verbena Panna Cotta

It’s the third week in September, at the start of the week, which means it is time for another Secret Recipe Club post! It’s been hot here, still, so despite my biggest wish to bake this month (and let me tell you, I’ve been wanting brownies!), I again went with something a little cooler. Didn’t want to add much heat to the kitchen. Especially with 100 degree temps here at home this last weekend! Whew. Thankfully, the day I made this it was only about 85 outside.

Before I dive into the recipe, I should likely mention who I had this month! This month I was very lucky to be paired with Tandy from Lavender and Lime! I’ve actually featured Tandy in a way here before, when I braised short ribs, so I know her blog pretty well. And given my sweet tooth was calling I went straight to her desserts, bypassed the baked goods (insert sad face here) and found a fantastic recipe for panna cotta!

I love panna cotta, it is rich, creamy, cool. Does well with fruit or chocolate on top. Or both! I went with just a blueberry sauce, it highlighted the lemon verbena I used to flavor the panna cotta base.

Tandy used lemon myrtle in her recipe, I don’t have a source for myrtle, but I do know where to find verbena on a semi-regular basis, my favorite local farm Susie’s. And they happened to be at a farmer’s market with some fresh lemon verbena yesterday just when I needed it.

And what a flavor it added to the panna cotta! Very subtle herbiness with a light lemon hint. Thinking about it, you could steep some lemon zest in the milk mixture along with the lemon verbena if you wanted more lemon kick.

The blueberry sauce was just some blueberries, a bit of water and some honey to taste. I heated them together on the stove until the blueberries started to pop then blended everything together in my blender. It as the perfect highlight for the panna cotta!

The only issue I had converting the recipe in my kitchen was the gelatin. I swear, no one page had anything that was the same, but most places seemed to agree that 1 teaspoon powdered equaled 1 leaf. I was using powdered. In my measuring I ended up with close to 2 packets worth of the powdered stuff. Thinking back, I may need to blame pregnancy brain for this, because each packet is about a tablespoon, and mathing it out….I had a little too much gelatin in our panna cotta. It was, shall we say, firm? But still tasty. Researching more now, I feel very safe saying that 1 packet of powdered gelatin is perfect for the amount of liquids in this recipe.

Now that I’ve done all that thinking for you, won’t you give it a try yourself?


Lemon Verbena Panna Cotta

Adapted from Lavender and Lime

I didn’t change Tandy’s measurements, I used my scale to measure out the sugar and the ml measure marks on my measuring cups. I’ve found conversions can be tricky, and given the gelatin issue I  had, I am glad I didn’t toy with it too much!

1 packet powdered gelatin
200 ml milk (I used a 1%)
55 g granulated sugar
2 stems  lemon verbena
200 ml heavy cream

In a small bowl, sprinkle in your gelatin powder and cover with the cream, allowing the gelatin to soften.

In a saucepan over medium low heat, combine your milk, sugar and the lemon verbena stems. Heat until the sugar has dissolved and the milk is steaming. turn off the heat and allow the verbena to steep for 5-10 minutes, then remove the verbena from the milk mixture. Whisk in the cream/gelatin mixture, then divide it between whatever serving dish(es) you would like.

Refrigerate for 4-6 hours until set, serve with any fruit, fruit sauce, or chocolate sauce you prefer!


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9 Responses to Secret Recipe Club: Lemon Verbena Panna Cotta

  1. This looks scrumptious!! Great SRC pick! I love it!

  2. Melissa says:

    This looks like a refreshing dessert! Great SRC pick! :)

  3. Looks beautiful. Panna cotta is one of those things I’ve only made in our cooking school. I never seem to make it at home, but I’m gonna have to break down and do it. Thanks for the push.

  4. What a beautiful and elegant presentation!

  5. Veronica says:

    I’ve never had panna cotta but this would be the first I’d want to try! It looks so creamy, like cheesecake, and I love the flavor profile. I’ve never tasted lemon verbena but my sister uses it in her homemade bath products and it smells delicious. It was the scent I chose when we made some soap for the troops together several months ago. I can tell the blueberries would be a perfect flavor compliment! Yum yum.

  6. Tandy says:

    Thank you so much for the kind words! I really must try and find some lemon verbena – and the blueberry sauce sounds divine. I am going to spend time looking into the gelatine conversions. Have a super day :)

  7. I sure am glad you did all the math! This looks wonderful, and I can’t wait to try it!

  8. gloria says:

    This look absolutely delicious!g

  9. Erin says:

    Beautiful!! I never would have thought of adding lemon verbena but I bet it went so well with the blueberry sauce. Great pick for SRC – glad to be in group C with you. :)

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