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Recipe: Vanilla Panna Cotta & Florentine Tuile (DBC Feb. 2011)

It’s been a very long absence since my last Daring Bakers Challenge (DBC). What better way to get back on the horse (so to speak) than this very simple Vanilla Panna Cotta & Florentine Tuile.

The February 2011 Daring Bakers’ challenge was hosted by Mallory from A Sofa in the Kitchen. She chose to challenge everyone to make Panna Cotta from a Giada De Laurentiis recipe and Nestle Florentine Cookies.


The only real spin to the original recipes posted for this challenge was to turn the Florentine cookies into more of a Florentine tuile. The requirement for quick oats, something that I didn’t have on hand, nor was able to procure, I’d stuck to grinding regular oats into an oat meal using a food processor and flattening out the dough so that once baked, it’d end up really thin and crispy.

It doesn’t take much effort to do. Just place a small ball of dough between two silicone baking sheets. Flatten out initially with something flat like a cutting board and then finish with a rolling pin until it’s a couple of millimetres thick. Before placing it into the oven, carefully peel off the top layer of baking sheet and place the Florentine tuile into the oven.

Whilst I played around with shaping the Florentine tuile into various forms (cones, bowl, tubes) due to the fragile nature of the dough rolled out so thin, the only thing that seemed to produce consistent results for me was cutting out shapes with a cookie cutter.

When cutting out shapes, hearts in my case though it can be anything really, the trick is to start cutting out shapes as soon as the Florentine sheet is pulled out of the oven while the cooked dough is still pliable. Shaping before they bake may seem like a smarter thing to do. However, I found that they deform while baking since the dough spreads as it cooks.

Once the shapes are cut, allow the cooked dough to cool down and set so that it’s easier to handle and remove the cut outs. Be careful as the finished product is quite brittle and can easily break if not handled properly.


Serve the tuiles either alongside the panna cotta or serve on top as pictured above, giving a brulee-like crust to crack through.

The recipe as per the challenge can be found on the DBC Challenge post on A Sofa in the Kitchen. The recipe used for this post is provided below.

One thing to note. I prefer my panna cotta slightly under set so that its texture is more like a firm custard. If you prefer your panna cotta firmer or are looking to serve it unmoulded, then you may want to adjust both the cream and milk to 250ml each in the recipe below to achieve the desired results.

Hope you’ve enjoyed this month’s DBC challenge. Until next month…

Vanilla Panna Cotta & Florentine Tuile

Vanilla Panna Cotta (adapted from David Leibovitz’s Perfect Panna Cotta recipe)


300ml cream (small carton)
300ml full fat milk
50g sugar
1 vanilla bean (or 1 tsp vanilla extract)
2 titanium gelatin sheets


  1. Place gelatin sheets into a bowl and cover with cold water. Allow to soak as per instructions until soft (usually around 5 minutes).
  2. Place cream, milk and sugar into a saucepan.
  3. Split vanilla bean, scrape out the seeds and add the seeds and the vanilla pod into the saucepan and heat on medium until it’s just about to come to the boil.
  4. Remove the saucepan from the heat.
  5. Squeeze excess water from the gelatin place into the saucepan.
  6. Stir in gelatin until it dissolves.
  7. Chill the saucepan’s contents in an ice bath until it comes to room temperature.
  8. Pour off the cooled mixture into individual moulds or cups, and place into the fridge to set (approx. 2-4 hours depending on your fridge).


Florentine Tuile (adapted from the Nestle Florentine Cookie recipe)


150 gm unsalted butter, melted
160 gm rolled oats
230 gm sugar
95 gm plain all purpose flour
60 ml dark corn syrup
60 ml full cream milk
1 tsp vanilla extract
pinch of salt

60g dark chocolate
2 tsp neutral flavoured oil


  1. Place the rolled oats into a food processor and process into a fine oat meal.
  2. In a bowl, place the melted butter, oats, sugar, flour, corn syrup, milk, vanilla & salt and stir until a thick, pasty batter is formed.
  3. Place a few spoonfuls of batter onto a silicone baking sheet.
  4. Place another silicone baking sheet over the batter and press down with a heavy flat object just as a cutting board or baking tray to flatten out the dough.
  5. With a rolling pin, roll out the dough between the baking sheets until it’s a few millimetres thick.
  6. Carefully peel off the top layer of baking sheet and place the rolled dough into a 190C pre-heated oven.
  7. Bake for approx. 6 minutes or until the dough has turned a golden brown.
  8. Remove from the oven and while hot, use a cookie cutter to cut out shapes from the baked dough.
  9. Allow to cool to room temperature and then remove the cut out shapes and place onto wire rack or another silicone baking sheet.
  10. Melt the chocolate either in the microwave or in a double boiler.
  11. Stir in the neutral flavoured oil into the chocolate to thin it out just enough so that it pours freely in a thin stream.
  12. Drizzle the chocolate mixture in thin streams over the florentine tuiles with a small teaspoon.
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{ 45 comments… add one }
  • Phuoc'n Delicious February 28, 2011, 1:42 am

    Welcome back to DBC! Look forward to what creative things you make in the next challenges. I didn’t get a chance to do this month’s challenge but would have love to do a 2 layer chocolate and passionfruit one of some sort..

    • Simon February 28, 2011, 1:53 am


      You know, I was so focused with doing something fancy with the florentine that I totally forgot about the gelee. Thankfully it wasn’t a requirement :)

  • Karen | C&C February 28, 2011, 2:58 am

    Welcome back to the DBs! I myself, have just returned but yet to get in the full swing of things. Good on you for doing the second part unlike my lazy ass :P

    • Simon February 28, 2011, 11:42 pm

      At least you did the first part to its fullest. That’s gotta count for something, right? :)

  • Umm Mymoonah February 28, 2011, 4:06 am

    Wow! Lovely lovely…. This looks amazing.

  • Sandie February 28, 2011, 5:17 am

    Lovely photo. I too, like it slightly underset. Panna cotta should be jiggly, not a hockeypuck. I love that your flavor choice- never underestimate the power of vanilla!!

    • Simon February 28, 2011, 11:42 pm

      I guess I take vanilla for granted. Never really looked at it that way before.

  • Emma @ Poires au Chocolat February 28, 2011, 5:21 am

    Looks lovely – I particularly like the last photo. I also found I had to cut the florentine after baking.

  • Ashlae February 28, 2011, 5:22 am

    I love you presentation! Absolutely gorgeous. And your heart cookies? So sweet.

  • Aparna February 28, 2011, 5:29 am

    Welcome back to the DB fold.
    What a beautiful looking panna cotta. Liked the florentine hearts. I had planned to cut out shapes like these originally but forgot all about it in my hurry to meet the deadline! :)

    • Simon February 28, 2011, 11:40 pm

      Well I’d forgotten about the gelee I was planning to do so I guess we’re much the same :)

  • Paula February 28, 2011, 5:40 am

    Just stepped by to say hi and I absolutely love your divine-looking photos!

    • Simon February 28, 2011, 11:39 pm

      Thanks for stopping by :)

  • Sarah February 28, 2011, 6:41 am

    I wondered how you made the Florentine Cookies into lace. Rolling out the dough/batter and cutting out hearts while it was still warm is inspired. Your end result looks so elegant. Welcome back!

    • Simon February 28, 2011, 11:38 pm

      Once the dough was thin enough, the lacing sorted itself out. Didn’t even know that that was a desired effect until reading other people’s posts.

  • A Cooking Dad February 28, 2011, 8:35 am

    Very nice version – sometimes simple really good. I look forward to seeing your posts in the future – looks like you take some good photos of your food.

  • Kim February 28, 2011, 8:37 am

    Beautiful photos of your Panna Cotta and cookies! Nice job on the challenge!

  • Gaby February 28, 2011, 8:41 am

    Good job on not giving up with the florentines until you finally got them right. The dessert looks great!

    • Simon February 28, 2011, 11:36 pm

      The failures were so tasty I hardly think it an achievement :P

  • Monica (MsHobby) February 28, 2011, 11:13 am

    What a great idea to make them heart-shaped. I think this made them really cute!

  • Audax Artifex February 28, 2011, 12:59 pm

    That last photo says it all delicious tasty and simple I love the simple elegance of the presentation superb work on this challenge. I adore how you made tuiles that is so clever.

    Cheers from Audax in Sydney Australia.

  • Shelley C February 28, 2011, 1:27 pm

    Beautiful, beautiful photos. Great version of the florentines, and awesome that you were able to prepare the panna cotta to your liking. Really great job.

  • tia @ buttercreambarbie February 28, 2011, 1:58 pm

    what an awesome idea to cut out hearts! perfect for vday ;) wow all your pics look so fantastic!!! clean and elegant. great job! I did a cheese-cake type panna cotta :)

    [Edit: removed gratuitous DBC post plug]

    • Simon February 28, 2011, 11:34 pm

      V day huh? Never looked at it that way. Will have to keep that in mind. Thanks :)

  • Renata February 28, 2011, 4:21 pm

    There are times when the simplest is the best! Making something so simple look so delectable is not easy!
    Your result is simple, elegant and looks delicious! Hats off to you!

  • Irvin February 28, 2011, 5:33 pm

    I love the heart tuile! I too tried various shapes (rolled, cones) but in the end, I only could do thin match sticks for my florentine.

    I do love the simplistic beauty of your panna cotta and florentine! Lovely. Welcome back to Daring Bakers!

    • Simon February 28, 2011, 11:33 pm

      Matchsticks were inspired. Loved it :)

  • mademoiselle délicieuse February 28, 2011, 7:39 pm

    But of course you had to stamp out hearts for the florentines! Must stay true to the blog name =D

    • Simon February 28, 2011, 11:32 pm

      Eh, can you blame me? :P

      I actually went with circle first. Just preferred how the hearts turned out.

  • Sheena February 28, 2011, 11:00 pm

    The heart tuiles look beautiful, and the presentation with the panna cotta is just lovely. I love your photos, Simon!

  • Balise February 28, 2011, 11:15 pm

    So cute, love it! (Want some!). I like the idea of the tuiles – mine were thicker and a bit more chewy, this must change quite a lot the feeling of the final cookie…

    • Simon February 28, 2011, 11:30 pm

      Very much so. The chewy cookie is nice too. Made those earlier on but I’ve always been a fan of thin and crispy :)

  • Gianna February 28, 2011, 11:29 pm

    would have loved to have this beautiful panacotta as part of last week’s dessert crawl ha-ha! Wonderful and very elegant DBC dessert Simon! I’ll try my hand at doing one soon :)

    • Simon February 28, 2011, 11:31 pm

      Man, felt so over pastries and cakes since the dessert crawl!

      This is so dead simple. It takes almost no effort to make.

  • Laura March 1, 2011, 10:52 am

    I recently did this challenge with the Daring Bakers but mine didn’t come out quite as cute. It was delicious but not pretty. I love the heart shaped cookies. I swoon.

  • sugarpuffi March 1, 2011, 11:57 am

    that panna cotta looks so freakin delicious! and ohhhh love heart tuile! love the pic where u put the tuile in the cup

  • MandyM March 1, 2011, 9:29 pm

    Your Florentine Tuiles are gorgeous! What a lovely decorative touch to the panna cotta.

    Gorgeous :D

  • Sirius73 March 1, 2011, 11:40 pm

    Cute idea to serve the Panna Cotta in little cups.

  • Lisa March 2, 2011, 1:35 am

    Loce the new look of your blog! Your panna cottas are simple, unadorned perfection, and love the heart shaped florentines – I was thinking of doing that myself at one point.

    Finally, so glad you noticed and mentioned my ‘GELEE’ fun. I hope no one took it seriously..lol I think I could have added a few more ;D

    • Simon March 9, 2011, 12:43 am

      I have no doubt in my mind that you could have gone a lot further with the usage of “GELEE”, caps and all :P

  • Jessiker @ Jessiker Bakes March 2, 2011, 6:13 am

    This looks yummy!!

  • Susan March 3, 2011, 2:36 pm

    I love the heart on top of the panacotta, that looks so cool. Have never made panacotta before, cause I am scared of gelatine…

    • Simon March 9, 2011, 12:42 am

      Scared of gelatine? Surely you jest… :)

  • Lea March 9, 2011, 12:25 am

    SO beautiful! Your heart-shaped florentiens are AMAZING and it looks even more amazing when you arrange them on the panna cotta! Congratulations!

  • Mary @ Delightful Bitefuls March 10, 2011, 5:47 pm

    Beautiful! This looks simply delightful!

    Great blog; happy I found you!

    Mary xo
    Delightful Bitefuls

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