Hooray for rhubarb season! I love it when these vibrant pink spears start to make an appearance. I’ve even got a couple poking through on the plant in my garden. They’re so cheery amidst all the gloom and grey of late winter.
Panna cotta is a great way to show it off too, it’s a nice simple canvas for it. Velvety and smooth with a rich vanilla flavour to really set off the sharp tang of the fruit (or is it a vegetable?)
Panna cotta is so easy to make, there’s no fiddly nonsense to it and it only takes a few moments, bar the setting time.

Ingredients
makes 4
200g rhubarb
2 tbsp gin
1 tbsp sugar
2 pieces of stem ginger in syrup (+1 tbsp of the syrup)
panna cotta
250ml whipping cream
250ml whole milk
1 vanilla pod
1 tbsp sugar
3 leaves of gelatine

Soak the gelatine in a little cold water and set it aside.
Combine the cream, milk, sugar and vanilla in a pan and gently heat it but don’t let it get too hot. Remove the pan from the heat and fish out the vanilla pod, if you like you can scrape out the seeds and stir them into the cream mixture.
Squeeze the excess water from the gelatine and then stir this into the cream, ensuring that it dissolves. Set this aside to cool to almost room temperature.


Once cooled you can give it a stir and pour it into moulds or serving dishes and then transfer it to the fridge to set.
Pre-heat your oven to 180°c.
Cut up the rhubarb (to whatever size suits you) and toss it in the gin and sugar. Put it in a baking dish and roast it for 10 minutes, by which time it should feel tender. Leave it in the dish to cool. Finely chop the ginger and toss it with the rhubarb and syrup. Serve this alongside the panna cotta once they are set.