Vanilla Panna Cotta w/ Rhubarb Compote

If you want a no fuss, simple, prepared in advance dessert – this is the one for you.  The tartness and colour of the compote contrasts the delicately sweet panna cotta beautifully.  If you don’t like rhubarb, or it’s out of season, simmering some fresh or frozen raspberries or strawberries in a splash of balsamic vinegar works great too.  Whatever accompaniment you choose for the panna cotta, all I can say is it’s a must try.


Ingredients:                                        makes four medium ramekins

Panna Cotta

  • 250ml (1 cup) full fat milk
  • 250ml (1 cup) double cream
  • 5 gelatine sheets (the packet I purchased recommended 5 sheets per 500ml, your gelatine sheets may be different sizes, so read the packet to see quantities required)
  • 1 vanilla pod, split lengthways, seeds scraped out
  • 3 Tbsp sugar

Rhubarb Compote

  • 400 g rhubarb, ends trimmed, sliced crossways to 3/4 inch pieces
  • 1/2 cup sugar
  • 1 inch piece ginger, peeled and grated
  • vanilla pod remnants from panna cotta


Start by making your panna cotta. Soak gelatine leaves in cold water until soft.

Panna CottaIn a medium saucepan, combine milk, cream, sugar, vanilla pod and seeds over a medium heat and bring to a simmer.

Panna Cotta_2Remove vanilla pod and reserve for compote.  Squeeze the water out of softened gelatine leaves and add to cream mixture.

Panna Cotta_1Immediately take off heat and stir until gelatine has dissolved.  Pour the mixture into four medium ramekins or more smaller moulds.

Panna Cotta_3Leave to cool to room temperature. Transfer to fridge to set, at least one hour.

Panna Cotta_4With the panna cotta setting, make your compote.  Stir together rhubarb, sugar, vanilla bean remnants and ginger in a saucepan off the heat, allow to stand until the rhubarb releases some liquid, approximately 10 minutes.  Place saucepan over a medium heat, bring to a boil and simmer, stirring occasionally until rhubarb has broken down – around 5 minutes.  Allow to cool – ready to serve (any leftovers go great with ice-cream, granola or yoghurt).

Panna Cotta_6To serve the panna cotta, once set, turn out onto a serving plate. If the panna cotta does not come out, you can heat the ramekin in some hot water to loosen. Serve alongside compote with a sprig of mint. Yummo.

Panna Cotta_7vanilla panna cotta w/ rhubarb compote