Panna cotta might feel like the kind of dessert that wouldn't translate well into a plant-based version, but trust me: this dish is a showstopper.
Its incredibly simple, requiring relatively little effort on your part: the most fiddly bit is remembering to start this dish well in advance, so you have time to infuse the cream and set your finished dessert. But once you've mastered the basic recipe, a whole world of possibilities for delicious variations opens up. This is also the ultimate get-ahead dessert, as it keeps well in the fridge for a good 5 to 7 days.
If you choose to use Whole Foods Vegeset, as I do here, be aware that this recipe calls for less than is stated on the packet. The reason for this is that you want your panna cotta to be just set, with a very good wobble – almost on the verge of collapse, but spoonable. Use too much setting agent, and you'll be left with a firm, rubbery texture instead.
3 fig leaves
750ml oat cream or other dairy-free alternative
½ vanilla pod, seeds scraped out
1 tsp vegan setting agent – I used Vegeset (see recipe notes)
120g caster sugar
4 fresh figs, quartered
2 tbsp sweet wine, masala, or apple juice (optional)
Vanilla bean paste
1 tbsp maple syrup
1 fig leaf, dried and broken up (optional)
Handful chopped pistachios (optional)
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