While flan and panna cotta have similar pudding-like textures, they're made a little differently. Both are cooked on the stove, but flan uses eggs as a thickener, while panna cotta, or "cooked cream," relies on gelatin. Italians, myself included, are partial to panna cotta, but I enjoy mixing things up a little and add Meyer lemon juice, which gives the dessert a nice zing. Serve it with a slice of candied lemon peel on the side.
- 3 sheets gelatin (available in specialty stores)
- 2 cups heavy cream
- 1 cup sugar
- 1 cup minus 2 tablespoons plain whole milk yogurt
- 1 cup minus 2 tablespoons sour cream
- 2 tablespoons Meyer lemon juice (if not available, use regular lemon juice) and an extra teaspoon sugar
- ¾ tablespoon grated Meyer lemon zest
- Nonstick cooking spray
1. Fill a bowl with cool water. Add the gelatin sheets and let soften.
2. In a medium saucepan bring the heavy cream and sugar to a boil. Remove from the heat. Remove the softened gelatin sheets from the water and add them to the hot cream. Stir to dissolve.
3. Stir in the yogurt, sour cream, Meyer lemon juice, and zest.
4. Coat the inside of eight 6-ounce ramekins with nonstick spray, then fill the ramekins with the lemon mixture. Refrigerate for at least 2 hours or up to 2 days.
5. To serve, unmold each ramekin on a dessert plate and and top with a fresh fruit of choice.