Saffron and Cardamom Panna Cotta

Recipe from What's For Lunch, Honey?  

Saffron Cardamom Panna Cotta (14) by MeetaK
Saffron and Cardamom Panna Cotta
(adapted from Pure Desserts by Alice Medrich)

Ingredients

3 1/4 cups heavy cream
1/2 cup sugar
Pinch of salt
5 cardamom pods
1/4 teaspoon saffron strands - crushed
1 cup whole milk
2 1/2 teaspoons unflavored gelatin
Finely chopped pistachio nuts - optional


Method

Heat the cream, sugar, and salt in a small saucepan until steaming hot. Stir from time to time to dissolve the sugar. Remove from heat, add the cardamom and saffron, then covered allow to steep for 25 minutes.

In the meantime pour the milk into a small bowl and sprinkle the gelatin over it. Set aside - do not stir - for 5 to 10 minutes to allow the gelatin to soften.

Add the milk-gelatin mixture to the cream mixture and reheat to steaming, stirring well to dissolve the gelatin.

Place a metal bowl in a larger bowl filled with ice and water. Strain the mixture into the metal bowl and stir frequently, until it cools and starts to thicken. Check the temperature with an instant-read thermometer - the mixture should cool down to 10 degrees C (50 F).

Divide the mixture evenly between six 6 ounce ramekins and cover with plastic wrap. Chill in the refrigerator for 12 hours, preferably overnight.

To serve: Either in the individual dishes or unmolded onto a plate. Sprinkle with chopped pistachios and a few saffron strands.

Tip: You can substitute 3 leaves of sheet gelatin for the granulated gelatin. Soak the leaves in the cold milk to soften them, then take them out from the milk and stir them into the hot cream - after the steeping process. Stir until completely dissolved. Stir in the milk and proceed as directed.