Panna Cotta Tricolor

This is the last dish of the menu that I have created to celebrate the 150 years of the Unification of Italy.  When I decided to make a theme menu for the occasion, this dish was the first I pictured in my mind.  I knew I wanted to make a layered sweet to represent the Italian flag.  The choice of panna cotta came naturally, being a typical Italian dessert.  When I went to Leichhardt (Sydney’s “Little Italy”), I found the 2 syrups I needed to make the red and the green layers of the flag: strawberry and mint.  I also added some food coloring to make the colours more intense like in the flag.  The white layer is a simple vanilla panna cotta.  I hope you enjoy it.
I am also sharing this post with my event 150 years of the Unification of Italy.


Ingredients for 4 persons:
400 ml cream
100 ml milk
40 gms sugar
3 sheets (6 gms) of gelatine (“colla di pesce”) or 2 tsp of gelatine powder
¼ tsp of vanilla extract or half sachet of “vanillina” powder
5 tbps mint syrup
5 tbsp strawberry syrup
Liquid food colouring, red and green (optional)

Put the gelatine sheets in a bowl filled with cold water for 10 minutes or until soft.

Put the cream, milk and sugar in a pot and cook it on a slow fire until the mixture boils.

Now put the fire off and add the soft gelatine sheets (or powder).  Mix well until the gelatine is well dissolved.

Divide the mixture into 3 small bowls.

Put the vanillina powder in one of the bowls, the mint syrup in the other and the strawberry syrup in the third bowl.  You can add the food colours as well, but it is optional.  I have added it because I wanted to get stronger colours to resemble the Italian flag, but they do not change the taste of the panna cotta.  Keep the 3 small bowls in a pot filled with hot water, so the gelatine doesn’t solidify while you prepare the 3 layers of panna cotta.

Put some of the red panna cotta (or the green one) in a small serving glass and put it in the freezer for at least 10 minutes or until it solidifies.

Then add the white panna cotta and put the glasses back in the freezer until it solidifies.

Put the last layer (either green or red) and put the glasses in the fridge for a couple of hours before serving.

Decorate with some mint or half a strawberry.  To make the strawberry look shiny, just brush it with a little melted gelatine.

NOTE: the time it takes for the layers to solidify may vary depending on the size of the serving glass and on the strength of the gelatine you are using.

Panna Cotta Tricolore


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  1. Pingback: Panna Cotta Tricolore | Food Frenzy

  2. I love your 150 Years of Unification posts – so much fun to see a series leading up to an celebration. Also, there are some great recipes linked on the event page too, which is a fabulous idea! Thanks for sharing your recipes and allowing others to share too :)

  3. PolaM says:

    I Might find cremini mushrooms over here, but I see vanillina Pane degli Angeli over there!! No little Italy in this part of the planet :(

  4. Dana says:

    Love, Love, Love did I mention LOVE this recipe! Pictures are gorgeous as well!

  5. I am are so creative! Love love love this..beautiful colors and great tutorial! I love the photos too!

  6. I love these, they are so beautiful I wouldn’t want to ruin them with my spoon. However I wouldn’t mind eating them as a consolation prize, since I will be one of the few working in Italy on the 17th…the world of finance must keep turning.

  7. Tony T says:

    Manu, simply beautiful…

  8. Karin @yum and more says:

    So simple, so beautiful, so well explained!
    Great stuff thank you!

  9. Tiffany says:

    YAH! I was waiting (and by waiting, I mean hoping) to see a dessert in your Unification tribute! Looks Mmmmm, mmmmmm, mmmmmm!

  10. Liz says:

    Wow!!! Just gorgeous! You pulled this off perfectly~

  11. Absolutely beautiful! I’m going to have to do this for all Italian holidays! :)

  12. jami says:

    What a great picture! It really caught my eye on Tastespotting!

  13. visda says:

    I LOVE pannacotta but your recipe and your colorful pictures exceed my imagination. GORGEOUS!

  14. Kankana says:

    you are AWSM !!!

  15. Reeni says:

    This is drop dead gorgeous! Your layers are so perfect and even – I love it!

  16. Bridgett says:

    You, my friend, are so very talented. What a gorgeous creation.

  17. Your Panna Cotta are just beautiful. Fun fact – I grew up in Leichhardt.

  18. Gorgeous! I can’t think of a nice finale to your series on unification. Viva L’Italia!

  19. Dimah says:

    It looks absolutely stunning!

  20. Jill Colonna says:

    Lost for words, Manu. Perfection in a glass. Gorgeous to look at and fun for your 150 years of Unification.

  21. visda says:

    I can’t take my eyes off of your panna cottas. I keep on buzzing them till I see them on top 9. This is the most beautiful post I have ever seen on foodbuzz and I wonder if it’s all politics that I never see it on the main page.:-(

    • Manu says:

      :-))))) Thank you so much Visda!!! You really put a smile on my face!!! I truly do not know how the foodbuzz top 9 works (whether they pick them from the posts or from the recipes…), but I am really glad you like my panna cotta so much! :-)))))))))

  22. Manu says:

    Thank you all sooooo much! I am really really happy that you all liked my panna cotta recipe! :-)))))))))))))))))))

  23. hi! manu, I like ur step by step photo! You pulled this off perfectly, beautiful;)

  24. Divya says:

    Gorgeous photos and an ingenious way to make panna cotta so fun! Thanks for sharing!

  25. Berrie Knight says:

    divine thank you so much

  26. mindy says:

    One word—GORGEOUS! Holy wow! Oops, that was three. Love it Hun!

  27. Liz says:

    Hey, I’ve seen these beauties before! Worth taking a second look…and even a third!

  28. Well, what can I say?! Simply wonderful! I’d love to eat this Italian flag ;)

  29. Manu, these are sooooo pretty!! You did such a great job!

  30. Pingback: I have been tagged!

  31. Wow, love your blog and passion for the art. Will be following as a regular.

    Here’s my blog . Comments welcome

    From one expat to another, “Alla prossima”

  32. Pingback: An Interview with Manu’s Menue, My Favorite Foodies Series

  33. This dessert is stunning as well as your entire blog. I’m so happy Nancy from Spicie Foodie shared your link on her blog post today. I look forward to getting your posts delivered to me by email so I don’t miss anymore.

  34. Pingback: 7 Colorful Panna Cotta Recipes

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