Vodka and vanilla panna cotta with minted strawberries

James Martin adds a contemporary twist to the classic Italian chilled cream dessert by spiking it with vodka
By James Martin
Vodka and vanilla panna cotta with minted strawberries
  • Rating:
  • Serves: 6
  • Cook Time: 20 minutes
  • Prep Time: 25 minutes plus cooling time and setting time
  • Effort: medium


  • 4 sheets leaf gelatine
  • 120 ml milk
  • 1.2 litres double cream
  • zest of 2 oranges, finely grated
  • 2 vanilla pods, split in half
  • 150 g caster sugar
  • 80 ml vodka

To serve

  • 125 g strawberries, quartered
  • 1-2 tbsp caster sugar
  • 1 small bunch mint, torn


1. Soak the leaf gelatine in the milk in a small bowl and set aside.

2. Heat 800ml cream, the orange zest, split vanilla pods and caster sugar in a pan. and bring to the boil. Simmer until the mixture is reduced by a third.

3. While the cream is reducing, remove the gelatine from the milk and heat the milk in a pan to warm gently. Add the soaked gelatine, stirring to dissolve the gelatine.

4. Stir into the warm cream; pour the mixture through a sieve and leave to cool.

5. Lightly whisk the remaining cream and whisk into the setting mixture, together with the vodka. Pour the mixture into 6 ramekins or similar sized moulds and place in the fridge to set.

6. Mix the strawberries, sugar and mint together in a bowl.

7. To remove the panna cotta from the moulds: briefly dip the base of the mould in hot water to release. Wipe with a towel to avoid any water dripping and then tip onto a plate.

8. Serve with the minted strawberries on the side.

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