Masala Chai Panna Cotta will be the perfect finish to a holiday dinner. Flavored with chai tea, whole spices like cinnamon, cloves, nutmeg and vanilla, its rich, creamy and really elegant. Make it for thanksgiving, Christmas, or even Diwali - this dessert leave your guests asking for seconds.
Rub oil on the insides of four six ounce ramekins and wipe them to get rid of any excess.
Place milk, tea leaves, cinnamon, cardamom and nutmeg in a sauce pan and bring it to a boil. Lower the heat once it starts boiling and simmer for 2-3 minutes.
Then add cream, sugar and pepper and whisk on a low heat till the sugar dissolves. Add vanilla extract and mix.
Meanwhile, add gelatin to cold water and allow it to bloom. Once it's bloomed, add it to the panna cotta mixture and mix well.
Strain the mixture using a sieve and a cheesecloth to get rid of any sediments. Divide the mixture in the ramekins and let them cool to room temperature. Refrigerate for at least 3 hours and up to a day.
To unmould, run a knife along the edges of the panna cotta. Then dip the ramekins in warm water for 3-4 seconds. Let them sit for another 5 seconds and then invert them onto a plate. Tap gently to allow the panna cotta to fall.
Blooming Gelatin: It's really important to bloom gelatin in cold water. If the water is even slightly warm before it blooms, the gelatin will start cooking and become lumpy
Gelatin: Use good quality gelatin. During our tests, we realised the quality of gelatin makes a huge difference to the final panna cotta.
To demould panna cotta, slide a knife around the edges. Then dip the ramekin (or mould) in hot water for 3-4 seconds. Let the ramekins sit for 5-10 seconds and then turn them upside down on a plate. Tap the bottom of the ramekin gently and the panna cotta should fall out. If it doesn't, repeat the process of dipping it in warm water in two second increments.