I can remember our summers growing up and playing outside with all the kids on the block and hearing that distinctive chime coming from down the street. It was the sound every kid was all too familiar with and it was a part of our summers! The one truck’s melody every one recognized, the Good Humor Truck! Kids would come out running from their homes to wave the truck to stop. It was a big treat for kid’s back in the day.
I tried to recreate that same treat, only in a more healthful and adult way.
Vanilla and Toasted Almond Panna Cotta is a silky, creamy and delicious treat! Similar to the toasted almond ice cream bar I would stand in line for when that truck was nearby.
Instead of making this dreamy dessert with heavy cream, I decided to make it with a coconut creamer. I remember making a Dairy-Free Pistachio Ice Cream a few years back using a coconut creamer without the heavy cream and without an ice cream machine and it turned out great.
I thought I’d try making this panna cotta with the same coconut creamer to see if I can get the same consistency and taste as if I used heavy cream. After one taste, I knew it was a hit, and no one realized it was made using a coconut creamer. Perfect!!
Panna Cotta is usually served with fresh berries on top or on the side, but I quickly toasted some shredded coconut on stove top for about a minute and used it as the garnish.
I made this Vanilla and Toasted Almond Panna Cotta over the weekend and brought it to a friends dinner party for dessert (and for a taste test). Thankfully, it received thumbs up by everyone!
Panna cotta is super easy to prepare. It makes an elegant dessert to serve guests and can be whipped up a few hours before they arrive.
No Bake, Dairy-Free, Vanilla & Toasted Almond Panna Cotta
- 2 cups (1 pint) coconut creamer (I used Trader Joes)
- 1 tsp. vanilla extract
- 1 tsp. pure almond extract
- 1/2 cup granulated sugar
- 1 packet of unflavored gelatin
- 2 Tbsp. organic shredded coconut
Pour 2 cups of coconut creamer into a small pot and over medium-low heat. Add the vanilla, almond extract and sugar.
Whisk until the sugar is completely dissolved and the creamer is heated through. Do not bring to a boil. Remove from heat and add in the unflavored gelatin and whisk continuously until the gelatin is melted and completely blended. Allow it to cool for 5 minutes.
Divide the mixture among four (4-ounce) glasses, or dessert cups or decorative molds. Cover and refrigerate for at least four hours or over night before serving.
Just before serving, in a small skillet add the shredded coconut and on low heat to warm the coconut until fragrant and turn golden color. Turn off heat and set it aside. Toasting the coconut can also be done in advance and stored in a small container until ready to use.
When ready to serve panna cotta, fill a small bowl with warm water, about 1 inch. Dip the glasses into the warm water for a few seconds and run the tip of a knife around the edge to loosen the panna cotta. Invert each one onto a dessert plate or platter and garnish with a sprinkle of toasted coconut, and serve immediately.