I’ve spent a good chunk of the last two weeks surrounded by spreadsheets, crumpled paper packets, cartons of dairy products and dirty ramekins. Josef Centeno has a lot to answer for.
A couple of weeks ago I stopped in at his Bäco Mercat restaurant downtown for a lunch that ended with one of the best panna cottas I’ve ever had. You know what I mean: Delicately sweet, it was like a dream of cream held together by faith and just a little bit of gelatin.
It struck me — how long had it been since I’d had panna cotta? A few years ago you couldn’t go anywhere without seeing it. Then just as suddenly it went away. It makes no sense. A good panna cotta is as good as dessert gets. Vowing I would never again leave my panna cotta cravings to the whims of restaurant fashion, I determined to master the dish.
How hard could that be?
…it turns out pretty hard, here’s the full story, and scroll to the last paragraphs for the perfected recipe: