Rose & Cardamom Panna Cotta

I am a sweet toothser and a PCOSer.
That’s enough tragedy for a lifetime. *sob*
Match made in hell.
Oh well.

Here’s a dessert I made when the craving hit hard. Besides it’s yumminess, it also looks so, so pretty.



I shall first give you a little back story of the flavors and inspiration.
Dulce de leche– this is caramelized sweetened condensed milk. Yep, the toffee part of the one and only, banoffee pie. While I’ve come across recipes where people cook a can of condensed milk in butter, I have never tried it, and honestly wouldn’t risk losing that much butter and condensed milk, in case anything goes wrong. Hence, I do it the easy, no-fail way: in a thick bottom pan, take enough water to immerse a can or two sweetened condensed milk ( you may want to remove the label to avoid a lumpy mess). Bring it to a boil, and let it be on low-medium heat for at least two hours. I suggest buying the tiny tins, as they heat up faster and the process happens quicker. You can let it cook for up to three hours, but make sure the tin is always completely immersed. If there is uneven heating, the can may expand unevenly and, well, leak or burst open. Who wants that?
The larger the tin, the longer it needs to caramelize, and the longer it caramelizes, the deeper the flavor. So, don’t be stingy ( for you LPG) or greedy or hasty, and let the damn dulce de leche magic happen. You can pressure cook it, there are many recipes online, but again I didn’t risk it. Or you could just head to the store and buy a tin of the good stuff off the imported section.
Flavors– I am a big fan of Indian sweets. I have an affinity for all things cardamom, sweets infused with rose water, fennel, saffron. Especially, when rose and cardamom are together, the vague but unmistakable gulab-jamun effect blows my mind!
The inspiration: My weakness to the rose flavored kulfi ad of quality walls that started screening on TV, that so badly made me crave for something gulabo (rose-y).
Necessity is the mother of invention. Hence, I bring to you, my melt in the mouth rose pudding. It’s agar based, and you may add gelatin if preferred.
The regular ratio I follow for agar-agar is 1.5-2 liter liquid to 1/3rd of the packet agar strands.
Yes, I like a little jigglejiggle. Check it out here!

0.75 litre Milk
Half cup heavy cream
Vanilla essence- 1.5 tsp
Rose essence- 2 tsp
Cardamom pods- 4-7 depending on how strongit is and how you’d like it
Rose concentrate syrup- 6 tbsp
Red food color- as desired
Agar- 8-10 gms
Dulce de Leche- 0.75 cup
Sugar- as desired, about a cup would do


  • Soak the agar in hot water for ten mins or longer.
  • Bring milk to a boil, add the agar strands, and let it cook till it dissolves. Alternatively, you can melt the agar strands separately in a small amount of water and pour into the milk. Don’t leave it unattended, keep stirring when agar is on heat as it gets easily scorched.
  • Add the dulce de leche and try not to eat most of it in spoonfuls.
  • Add the vanilla & rose essences, cardamom pods, and rose concentrate syrup. Also add the food color now.
  • You may coat the molds now with rose concentrate syrup for a sheen when demoulded.
  • Add the cream, & let the mixture simmer. Add sugar to taste.
    Strain into molds and let it set, or better yet, refrigerate.
  • Once set, demould it, jiggle it, and stare at how pretty it looks as long as you can resist digging into it.





9 thoughts on “Rose & Cardamom Panna Cotta

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