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Panna Cotta question

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does panna cotta always have to be made with cream? besides honoring the original name of the dessert "cooked cream" what is the reason it cannot be made into a lower-fat version, perhaps just with whole or 2% milk--I made some this weekend with full fat yogurt and heavy cream and while delicious, seemed a bit excessive.

Does anyone have some good variations for a lower fat panna cotta?
thanks!

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  1. Yes, I'm afraid it does.

    There are low(er) fat vanilla custard recipes out there, but without the cream you'd lose the mouth feel that makes panna cotta what it is - and, as you say, panna cotta quite simply means cooked cream. That's not its "original" name, it's what it is, pure and simple.

    By all means, look for a heart-friendlier dessert, but please don't use the name panna cotta for a dish with no cream in it.

    2 Replies
    1. re: BobB

      I agree, call it milk Jello or something but it will not be panna cotta. It is not an everyday dessert so why not leave it alone?

      1. re: Candy

        Exactly--it would be like the almond jello you get at dimsum.

    2. It needs cream to preserve the mouthful but all the dairy products involved need not be cream. Personally, I love the Claudia Fleming's buttermilk panna cotta. It has a fresh light taste and just the right amount of gel. I hate it when panna cotta lasts like congealed fat.

      1 Reply
      1. re: JudiAU

        I agree. Yogurt, buttermilk, coconut milk are good substitutes - or you can use a third milk instead of all cream. A good fruit puree would probably work too, maybe mango or pear.