It makes me laugh when I think of all those lists about finding a man. You know, the “top 10 ways to meet a guy” kind of lists. More than once, I’ve spotted “adopt a dog” on those lists. Apparently, if you adopt a dog, you can increase your chances of meeting somebody. I laugh because I adopted Jynx almost 8 months ago, and I have yet to “meet a guy”. Of course, I didn’t adopt Jynx with the goal of meeting someone. I adopted her because I was lonely and I missed Zen. Eight months later, I laugh at those lists that claim you will meet a guy if you adopt a dog. I love Jynx, but I’m pretty sure she will not help me find a man (and she probably will not be able to defend me or save me from a burning building either, but that’s a whole other story). Maybe I’ll have better luck finding a man with these Earl Grey panna cotta tarts? Or maybe I should walk around with homemade pies.
The first reason I think that I can’t seem to “meet a guy” on my walks with Jynx is because the guys I do meet are married or walking their girlfriend’s dog. Especially early in the morning. And when I do cross paths with these men, for the most part, they look at Jynx and they smile. They don’t see me. I don’t exist. Jynx is cute, and she steals the show. I am invisible. I am the girl carrying the poop bag behind the cute, adorable puppy-faced dog. I could even be waving at the, and they still wouldn’t see me.
There’s also the fact that if Jynx and I do cross paths with a guy and his dog, Jynx often goes into panic mode, and she wants to run away and hide. This leads to the man questioning me in a most concerned and confused tone. He probably thinks I am some whack job that abuses puppies in my dark, creepy basement. Usually, I have my angry face on during these encounters because dude can’t control his dog and his dog has freaked out my dog. So, I am pissed off. I am not in a “let’s go for coffee!” kind of mood. My eyes are usually screaming at the guy to get his dog away from mine. I’m sure the flashes of rage that cross my face make me irresistible, right? And the idiot with the dog will often make a dumb comment about how he’s noticed Jynx is scared.He’s probably not the one for me. Jynx doesn’t make a good wing-
woman dog. Oh well.
How do you make a panna cotta?
You can make panna cotta with a combination of milk and cream, or just milk for a lighter option. The milk is sweetened (with sugar, maple syrup, brown sugar, etc.) and flavoured (you can infuse the milk with herbs, spices, or even tea). The flavoured milk is warmed then mixed with gelatin to set it into a dessert that can be served in jars or that can be unmolded onto a plate. You can also pour the panna cotta mixture into tart shells to make panna cotta tarts, like in this recipe.
For these tarts, I originally tested a panna cotta recipe with less gelatin (3/4 tsp), but unfortunately the resulting panna cotta filling was riding the line between set and unset, as you can see in the following picture. I liked it that way, but I don’t think that it was “technically correct” so I retested the panna cotta filling with a little more gelatin (1 1/4 tsp) and the set was perfect. The filling is still luxuriously creamy, but properly set so it doesn’t ooze when you cut into it. I think I could even have gotten away with just a teaspoon of gelatin.
What do you serve with panna cotta?
This pâte sablée is one of my favourites because it makes a great, not-too-sweet crust for these tarts, but it also makes yummy cookies. I could have played around with the panna cotta filling recipe so that it would fill all 8 tart shells, but instead, I made 6 tarts and used the rest of the dough and cut out cookie hearts so that I had something to nibble on while I patiently waited for the panna cotta to set. Cookie hearts are necessary when you have to wait overnight for dessert. If you prefer to have panna cotta without the tart shell, feel free to make the panna cotta and divide it into glasses (greased if you’d like to unmold them). For other panna cotta recipes, find them on this panna cotta page.
Earl Grey Panna Cotta Tarts Recipe
Earl Grey panna cotta tarts
Make the gorgeous tea-flavoured Earl Grey panna cotta at home with this recipe.
- 250 mL 2 % milk 1 cup
- 1 tbsp loose leaf Earl Grey tea
- Zest of 1 lemon
- 125 mL 35% cream 1/2 cup
- 28 grams granulated sugar 2 tbsp
- 1 1/4 tsp Knox gelatin powder
- 35 grams white chocolate 1/4 cup, melted
- 6 pre-baked tart shells
- Optional: edible dried flowers honey comb for decorating finished tarts
- Warm milk in a small saucepan with the looseleaf tea and lemon zest (heat but don't boil). When the milk is hot, remove from the stove and let infuse 1 hour.
- Strain the tea-infused milk then place in a medium saucepan with the cream, sugar, and sprinkle the Knox gelatin overtop. Let stand 10 minutes, then heat the mixture while whisking on medium-low until the sugar and the gelatin have dissolved (I heated the mixture to 125ºF, knowing that gelatin melts at 104ºF).
- Strain the mixture into a pouring jug or a big spouted measuring cup. Let cool 30 minutes at room temperature, whisking every so often, then in the fridge (still whisking intermittently) until the panna cotta is below 100ºF.
- Meanwhile, brush the 6 pre-baked tart shells with the melted white chocolate and place on a rimmed sheet in the fridge to set.
- Pour the cooled panna cotta into the shells and refrigerate overnight to set.
Note that I used 3/4 of the pâte sablée that I made. I made cookies with the rest of the dough.
Pâte sablée tart shells
This recipe for pâte sablée can be used to make sweet tart shells or little cookies. The dough is made with a little ground almond which adds a nuttiness to baked goods.
- 125 grams Stirling Creamery Churn 84 salted butter 1/2 block, room temperature
- 94 grams icing sugar 3/4 cup
- 50 grams ground almonds 1/2 cup
- 1 large egg
- 208 all-purpose flour 1 2/3 cup
- Extra butter melted, for greasing the pans
Make the dough
Cream the Stirling butter with the icing sugar and the ground almond.
- Add the egg and mix until smooth.
- Add the flour and mix until the flour is blended in but don't overmix.
- Pat the dough into a disk, wrap and refrigerate for at least 1 hour.
Blind bake the tart shells
- Grease 4-inch removable bottom tart pans. Divide the disk of dough into 8 equal pieces and roll each piece into a ball.
- Roll out each on a floured surface into a circle of about 5 to 6 inches and line removable bottom tart pans, trimming the edges as needed. I only needed 6 tart shells for the panna cotta tarts, so I made cookies with the rest of the dough.
- Chill unbaked shells 1 hour.
- Preheat the oven to 350ºF. Dock pastry with a fork, top each with a square of parchment and fill with beans.
- Bake 15 minutes with the beans, then at least 10 minutes without or until the edges are golden brown.
- Let cool completely, then <a href="https://www.kitchenhealssoul.com/2013/11/22/how-to-pop-a-tart-out-of-a-tart-ring/html">pop out of tart rings</a>.
Want to bake more with tea? Try these recipes!
I do my best to bake with the finest ingredients. Stirling Creamery, a Canadian company, has provided the butter for this post.