Burnt Caramel Panna Cottas Recipe – Spanish Special

Of all the rich, eggy sweets perfected by nuns in medieval Spanish convents and then exported to the New World, flan became the most popular by far. Related to crema Catalana, with its brittle caramelized sugar on top, a good flan is all about the primal pleasure of spooning the dark, bittersweet caramel sauce over the milky, jiggly custard.

  • Prep Time6 hr 10 min
  • Cook Time30 min
  • Total Time6 hr 40 min

Burnt Caramel Panna Cottas Ingredients :

  • 1 cup plus 6 tablespoons granulated sugar, divided
  • 2 1/2 cups half-and-half
  • 1/2 cup heavy whipping cream
  • 1 pinch kosher salt
  • 2 1/2 teaspoons (1 envelope) gelatin powder
  • 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract

How to Make Burnt Caramel Panna Cottas


Select 6 to 8 small or medium heatproof ramekins or glasses; arrange on a tray. Set aside.


Make a dry caramel: Place 1 cup of sugar in a large saucepan and place over medium heat. Once the sugar begins to melt, start stirring it occasionally, using a wooden spoon, to help the sugar melt evenly. Avoid the urge to remove it from the heat as soon as the sugar is melted—the caramel is done once it has turned a deep amber color, by which point it will be smoking lightly, about 10 minutes total (if you’re nervous about burning, turn the heat to low once the sugar has melted, which will take an additional 5 to 7 minutes, but you’ll have more control). Immediately remove the pan from the heat and divide the caramel between the ramekins.


Start the panna cottas. add ¼ cup cold water to the bottom of a large pitcher or bowl with a pouring lip. Sprinkle the gelatin evenly over the
surface of the water (not in a pile) and let sit for 5 to 10 minutes or until the gelatin powder is mostly absorbed.


Combine the half-and-half, cream, remaining 6 tablespoons sugar, and salt in a medium saucepan over medium-high heat, stirring occasionally until the mixture comes to a boilabout 5 minutes. Once the cream mixture comes to a boil, remove it from the heat and stir in the vanilla extract. Pour the hot liquid into the pitcher with the gelatin and stir for at least 1 minute to ensure the gelatin fully dissolves.


Divide the hot panna cotta between the ramekins. Gently tap each to remove any air bubbles, then press plastic wrap to the surface of each panna cotta and chill for at least 7 hours or overnight. Store uneaten panna cottas in their ramekins in the refrigerator for up to 3 days.