|Goat Cheese and Green Chile Panna Cotta with Tomato-Peach Sauce|
There’ve been plenty of failures but I didn’t think they were worth photographing much less writing about. You never saw the rye crust pizza that was leaden heavy on the pan and in our stomachs, nor the endless stream of whole grain, low-sugar chocolate chip cookies that I still call works in progress because I’m not ready to call it quits. There’ve been plenty of Experiments and abject failures.
So, yes, there was some reluctance about presenting this #Baketogether recipe because it did not turn out as I had envisioned. But the point of this monthly baking group led by Abby Dodge is not to showcase kitchen prowess. Rather, it has grown into a community where we develop our skills, share ideas, be creative and encourage each other. Participating has been one of the most enjoyable parts of my blogging life. Returning to the working world means I have less time for baking and blogging and I miss this little corner of cyberspace.
And now about the recipe. Abby’s August feature is a gorgeous Ricotta Panna Cotta with Colorful “Brezza Fresca,” (a spritsy sauce of ginned raspberries). Just the notion of gin with raspberries is excitement enough.
I thought a lot about what how I would approach Abby’s recipe and all of those recipes were most definitely sweet. Then one day my mind got stuck on a savory path when I saw a load of Hatch chiles at the supermarket. Roasted chiles, goat cheese and ricotta would form the base. For color and contrasting flavor, a fresh tomato-peach sauce with a little white wine. I know; it sounds fabulous and is pure summertime.
The result was a bit “meh.” I think something other than ricotta would have been better — mascarpone, cream cheese, half and half. More salt. As for texture, mine did not set up well, and part of that is because I used agar-agar, a vegetarian alternative to gelatin. I followed directions which said to treat agar-agar as you would gelatin. I think maybe I should not have used that 1/4 cup of water in the recipe. Or may I should have used gelatin and not tried to experiment.
The tomato-peach sauce I whipped up very quickly, basically using equal quantities of both fruits, salting to taste and splashing in a fruity white wine for dimension. The color of the sauce was what bothered me. All I had were white peaches and they dulled the sauce. Regular peachy peaches would have made a prettier color.
If you’ve never had tomatoes and peaches together, I urge you to try them and check out my Tomato-Peach Jam from last summer.
So, no, I wasn’t crazy about the result of my experiment, but I didn’t let it go to waste. Instead of serving this as an appetizer, which had been my plan, I placed it alongside our supper of scrambled eggs, refried beans and corn tortillas.
My husband asked “What is this?” as he took a bite.
“Oh, just something I made for my blog,” I mumbled, “but it didn’t really turn out.”