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Lemon Fennel Panna Cotta

Pastry Chef Tim Nugent
Scala's Bistro

Makes 10 ramekins

  1. Chill 10 six-ounce ramekins and lightly spray them with Pam or other cooking spray.
  2. Combine milk, cream, sugar and vanilla in a saucepot and bring to a boil.
  3. Add the lemon zest and fennel seed. Steep for one hour.
  4. Bring the mix back to a boil. Stir in gelatin and make sure it dissolves completely.
  5. Let the mix cool to room temperature. Strain through a fine strainer and fill each chilled ramekin.
  6. Let set overnight for best flavor. Garnish with fresh blueberries.

Almond Anise Biscotti

Pastry Chef Tim Nugent
Scala's Bistro

Makes two dozen

  1. In your mixer using the paddle attachment, cream the butter and sugar. Then add eggs one at a time until all are fully mixed in.
  2. Mix together the flour, cornmeal, baking powder and salt. Add this to the creamed butter and sugar. Then add the almonds and anise seed.
  3. Roll this mixture into logs about 1 inch in diameter.
  4. Bake logs at 325 degrees Fahrenheit for about 30 minutes until golden brown.
  5. Making biscotti is a two-bake process. Slice the logs on the bias (roughly a 45-degree angle) to desired thickness and re-bake until dry, about 15 minutes.

Strawberry Basil Gelato

Pastry Chef Tim Nugent
Scala's Bistro

Makes 2 quarts

  1. In a medium saucepan, combine the cream and milk. Cook over medium heat until bubbles form around the edges of the pan.
  2. Meanwhile, in a mixer using the whisk attachment, combine the egg yolks and sugar. Whip until very thick, tripled in volume and lemon yellow in color.
  3. Remove the egg mixture from the mixer and slowly stir in half of the hot cream and milk mixture (this is called "tempering").
  4. Pour this new mix into the remaining cream and milk mixture. Place it back over low heat and cook, stirring constantly with a wooden spoon for 6 to 8 minutes or until the mixture thickens and coats the back of the spoon.
  5. Remove from heat and add the strawberry puree and basil leaves. With a hand blender, blend until smooth.
  6. Let the basil steep, tasting occasionally until you have the desired flavor. (Please note both of these ingredients are based on the sweetness of the strawberry and the intensity of the basil. It can vary.)
  7. Strain everything through fine mesh strainer. Cover and refrigerate for at least 2 hours.
  8. Transfer gelato base to an ice cream maker and freeze according to the manufacturer's instructions.