December 27, 2011

Cereal Milk Panna Cotta

I recently bought myself the Momofuku Milk Bar cookbook and just had to make something right away. I chose this recipe to serve at my new stove christening dinner party, after making osso buco and polenta with my friend Stephanie.

The milk tastes just like the cereal you steep it with. I chose two of my favorite childhood cereals, Golden Grahams & Cap'n Crunch. In the cookbook, pastry chef Christina Tosi recommends toasted cornflakes or Fruity Pebbles. I think Apple Jacks would be good, too.

The flavored milk can also be used in coffee or to make ice cream (Tosi's recipe calls for gelatin instead of eggs in the ice cream, so as not to mask the flavor of the milk). I chose the panna cotta recipe because it was pretty simple.

Cereal Milk Panna Cotta

For the cereal milk:

2 1/2 cups Golden Grahams or Cap'n Crunch
3 3/4 cups cold whole milk
2 tablespoons tightly-packed light brown sugar
1/4 teaspoon salt
  • Put the cereal into a large pitcher & crush with your hands to the texture of coarse sand. Pour in the milk & stir vigorously. Let steep for 20 minutes at room temperature.
  • Strain the mixture through a fine-mesh sieve, collecting the milk in a medium bowl. The milk will drain off quickly at first, then become thicker and starchy toward the end of the straining process. Using the back of a spoon, wring the milk out of the cereal, but do not force the mushy stuff through the sieve.
  • Whisk in the brown sugar & salt into the milk until fully dissolved. Store in a clean pitcher or glass jar, refrigerated, for up to 1 week.
For the panna cotta:

1 1/2 gelatin sheets (or 3/4 teaspoon powdered gelatin)
1 1/4 cups cereal milk
1 1/2 tablespoons tightly-packed light brown sugar
1/4 teaspoon salt
  • Bloom the gelatin: Sprinkle the gelatin evenly onto the surface of cold water in a small dish. Allow the soften for 3-5 minutes, then gently squeeze the bloomed gelatin to remove any exces water. Place the gelatin in a medium mixing bowl.
  • Warm a little bit of cereal milk and whisk it into the gelatin to dissolve. Whisk in the remaining milk, brown sugar, and salt until dissolved. 
  • Pour the mixture into four small serving dishes or glasses. Chill in the refrigerator until set, at least 3 hours (or overnight).

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