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Lavender-Shallot Panna Cotta with Burnt Orange Sauce and Caramelized Oranges


A silky and savory panna cotta celebrates the flavors of spring with lavender, shallot, meyer lemon and fresh goat cheese. It is served with a lavender-thyme burnt-orange sauce and black pepper, lemon, and walnut biscotti and topped with caramelized oranges.

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Lavender-Shallot Panna Cotta with Burnt Orange Sauce and Caramelized Oranges 1 Picture


  • For the panna cotta:
  • 2 T dried lavender flowers
  • 1 c. heavy cream
  • 2 t. unflavored gelatin powder
  • 5 T freshly-squeezed lemon juice, preferably meyer lemon juice
  • zest of 1 lemon (preferrably meyer lemon)
  • 1 c. whole milk
  • 4 oz. fresh chevre (goat cheese), softened (such as Cypress Grove Purple Haze)
  • 2 T + 1 T finely minced shallot
  • 1 T minced chives
  • For the burnt-orange sauce:
  • 2 large oranges
  • 3/4 c. freshly-squeezed orange juice (from about 2 lg. oranges)
  • Grated zest from 2 lg. oranges
  • 1/3 c. fresh lemon juice, from about 1 1/2 lemons
  • 1 t. dried lavender flowers
  • 1 vanilla bean
  • 3-4 sprigs fresh thyme
  • Fresh ground black pepper
  • pinch of salt
  • 2 T water
  • 1 1/2 t. light corn syrup
  • 1/2 c. sugar
  • For Candied Oranges:
  • 1 1/3 c. water
  • 2/3 c. sugar
  • 1 seedless oranges (unpeeled), cut into paper-thin slices


Servings 4
Adapted from


Step 1

*For the Panna Cotta*
1. In a small saucepan over medium-low heat, combine the lavender buds and the heavy cream and bring to a boil, stirring.
2. When the cream and lavender come to a boil, remove from the heat, cover and let steep for 15 minutes. Strain the cream through a fine mesh strainer and discard the lavender. Set the cream aside to cool.
3. Spray 4 6 oz. custard cups lightly with non-stick spray.
5. Sprinkle the gelatin powder over the lemon juice in a small bowl and allow to soften, about 10 minutes.
4. Combine the whole milk, lavender-infused cream, softened goat cheese and 2 T of shallots in a small saucepan and heat over medium low heat, stirring, until the goat cheese is completely melted and the mixture is thoroughly warmed.
5. Season to taste with kosher salt and freshly ground pepper.
6. Add the gelatin and lemon juice to the pan and stir until the gelatin is completely dissolved, about 2 minutes. Taste and add salt and pepper as needed.
7. Pour the mixture into a glass measure and allow to cool to lukewarm, about 15 minutes.
8. Add the lemon zest, the remaining 1 T of minced shallot, and the chives to the panna cotta base. Mix thorougly, and add salt and pepper to taste.
9. Pour the panna cotta mixture into the custard cups and allow to cool to room temperature. Cover with plastic wrap and chill for several hours, or overnight.

*For the Carmelized Oranges and Burnt Orange Sauce:*
1. Peel the 2 oranges with a sharp knife, removing all peel and white pith. Slice the oranges cross-wise into 1/2 in. slices. Set the oranges aside in a heat-proof bowl.
2. Place the fresh orange juice in a glass measure and set it near the stove with a long-handled ladle.
3. In a heavy saucepan (NOT non-stick), combine the fresh lemon juice, sugar, water, and corn syrup. Stir to combine.
4. Using a square of cheesecloth and some kitchen twine, make a bouquet-garni of the lavender flowers and the fresh thyme. Add it to the saucepan.
5.Add the vanilla bean to the saucepan, and bring the mixture to a boil over medium heat, stirring to dissolve the sugar. Allow the vanilla bean and bouquet-garni to steep until large bubbles begin to form on the surface of the syrup. Remove the vanilla bean and the bouquet garni, and reserve.
6. Continue to boil the syrup until it is a deep amber color.
Immediately pour the juice into the bowl of the ladle and add it to the boiling syrup, being careful not to get burned. Repeat with rhe remaining orange juice.
7. Bring the syrup back to a boil, and add the vanilla bean and bouquet-garni back to the syrup.
8. Boil until reduced and thickened, about 5 minutes. Add salt and black pepper to taste.
9. Remove the bouquet garni and discard.
10. Pour the burnt-orange syrup and vanilla over the sliced oranges.
11. Cool to room temperature and then cover with plastic wrap and chill for several hours.

*For Candied Oranges:*
Cover rack with waxed paper. Combine water and sugar in heavy wide shallow pot. Stir over medium heat until sugar dissolves. Simmer 5 minutes. Add oranges slices 1 at a time. Adjust heat so syrup bubbles only around edges of pan. Cook oranges 1 hour. Turn over top layer of oranges and cook until oranges are translucent and orange peels are tender, about 1 hour longer. Arrange oranges in single layer on prepared rack. Let dry 1 hour. Boil sugar syrup until thick, about 6 minutes. (Can be prepared 6 hours ahead)

*To serve:*
Loosen the panna cotta by running a knife along the sides (between the panna cotta and the glass). Drizzle some burnt orange syrup from the caramelize oranges on a dessert plate. Invert the panna cotta on the dessert plate, it should come out easily. Garnish the top with either slices of caramelized oranges or candied oranges on top. Place some small bit of caramelized oranges around the edges of the panna cotta.


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