Monday, May 30, 2016

Chai Biskoot Panna Cotta with candied ginger and warm ginger syrup

Who doesn’t love a cup of strong tea with a few biscuits to go along with it at the end of a long and tiring day?

I am sure I must have had it previously but the chai-biskoot combination is something I associate with Calcutta, or Kolkata.  It’s maybe because we were served a nice pot of tea and Marie biscuits two times a day, without fail by the guy who managed the guest house we stayed in.

A cup of chai-biskoot and I remember the busy streets of Calcutta, katti rolls, puchkas, God of small things, Munnabhai MBBS, my cousin’s wedding and the fun I had with my cousins on that trip. So, occasionally, when I like to get nostalgic and go down the memory lane, I brew a cup of sweet tea and have it with biscuits, while reminiscing about the pre-adulthood era. 

When I came across the Britannia Chunkies #‎ChefsWithChunkies contest, it didn’t take me long to decide that I want to go the Chai-Biskoot way. 
So without further ado, here is the recipe.


For Panna Cotta 

125 ml cream (I used Milky Mist medium fat cream)
125 ml milk
1.5 – 2 Table spoons granulated sugar
1.5 teaspoon gelatin
1 tablespoon tea leaves (I used Tata Gold)

For candied ginger and ginger syrup:
Half inch ginger – sliced thinly
4 tablespoons sugar
4 – 5 tablespoons water 


For Panna Cotta:

Heat the milk on stove on medium flame. When heated, add the tea leaves and allow the milk to boil.
Remove the bowl off fire and steep tea for one or two minutes so that you get a strong tea concoction. Use a strainer and remove the tea leaves. 

After steeping, you should have 75 ml of the tea to be used for panna cotta, especially if you are using tea leaves/granules. 

Add the sugar at this stage and stir well to allow it to dissolve. 

Sprinkle the gelatin on surface and allow it to rest for around 2 minutes. Place the milk back on stove and heat it on low flame and stir until gelatin and sugar dissolves completely.  Please ensure that the milk doesn’t simmer or boil as it will affect gelatin’s thickening capacity.     

Remove tea off the heat. 

Heat the cream on stove on low flame. Ensure that the cream doesn’t boil as it might split. 

Once the cream is warm, remove it off the stove.

Add the milk and tea concoction to the cream and mix well. 

Taste to check if the tea flavor and sugar level is according to your preference.

Grease/butter the ramekins you are using to set the panna cotta. Pour the cream and milk mixture into the ramekins and refrigerate. Retain a little of this mixture to dunk the cookie in while serving. 

When ready to serve, place the panna cotta ramekin in a bowl of warm water for a few seconds and run a blunt knife along the top edge. 

Dunk a Chunkies cookie in the tea cream mix once and place over the panna cotta. 

Unmold the panna cotta on to the serving plate. 

Sprinkle the chopped candied ginger on top. 

Drizzle warm ginger syrup around the panna cotta and serve immediately.

Method for candied ginger:

Add 4 tablespoon sugar and 4 tablespoon water in a bowl and bring to boil. 

Once boiled, add the thinly sliced ginger pieces and allow to boil for 5 – 7 minutes. 

Remove ginger pieces from the syrup and allow to cool. Once cooled sufficiently, chop the ginger pieces into small bits.

Method for warm ginger syrup:

Just before serving, add 1-2 tablespoon water to the remaining sugar and ginger syrup and boil the remaining syrup to the desired consistency.


1.      I followed the basic recipe of panna cotta as published by The Kitchn. Please find the link below:

2.      You are free to use only cream as the traditional panna cotta requires. I used milk as I wanted to infuse the tea flavor.

3.      I used Milky Mist medium fat cream and Tata Gold tea leaves

4.      The recipe I followed indicated that I can refrigerate the panna cotta for 2 hours if serving as is. If unmolding, it specified to allow the panna cotta to chill for 4 hours at least. I left panna cotta in fridge overnight.

5.      Don’t leave the panna cotta ramekin in hot water for too long. Just a few seconds would do to help unmold.

6.      I used an additional cookie as the bottom layer but you are free to leave that out.

7.      I left a few pieces of ginger while making the syrup just so that I can get the strong ginger flavor.

And now, come say hello to my Chai Biskoot Panna cotta with candied ginger and warm ginger syrup.