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Chocolate Hazelnut Panna Cotta

Do you like to play around in the kitchen?  Have you ever created a recipe so good it should have won a prize?  Well I’ve got a contest for you.  A handful of food blogger friends and I have teamed up with Pacific Natural Foods to be judges in the Everyday Chef Challenge – a fun and friendly recipe competition that any of you can enter.  There are some fantastic prizes up for grabs, including an 11-piece Le Creuset Cookware Set valued at $1000!

Here are the recipe categories:

You may enter as many recipes in as many categories as you wish as long as each recipe entry includes at least one Pacific Natural Foods product.

Each guest judge got to choose the prize being offered for their category and I think we picked out some pretty cool stuff.  Check out these prizes:

The contest opens on Monday and the contest runs through November 14th, so you have plenty of time to get in the kitchen and start creating!  Full contest details can be found here.

Pacific Natural Foods sent me a box of their products to sample so that I could create a recipe to help get your creative juices flowing.  When I saw this hazelnut chocolate drink, I knew I’d be using it in my dessert recipe.

I decided to combine the hazelnut chocolate drink with heavy cream, chocolate hazelnut spread, and gelatin to make a simple panna cotta.  Although panna cotta is easy to make (this recipe only has four ingredients!), I think it can be a very elegant dessert – especially when dressed up with gorgeous pomegranate arils.

Chocolate Hazelnut Panna Cotta

1 cup heavy cream
1 cup Pacific Natural Foods Hazelnut Chocolate Drink
1/2 cup hazelnut chocolate spread, such as Nutella
3 tablespoons cold water
1 packet powdered gelatin (approximately 2 1/4 teaspoons)

optional garnish:  whipped cream, pomegranate arils, chopped toasted hazelnuts

Heat cream, hazelnut chocolate drink, and hazelnut spread in a small saucepan over medium heat, whisking occasionally until hazelnut spread has melted and is completely incorporated and liquid is steaming; remove from heat.  While cream mixture is heating, put the cold water in a small bowl and sprinkle with gelatin.  Let gelatin soften for five minutes.  Once cream mixture has been removed from heat, but is still hot, whisk in softened gelatin until completely dissolved.  Pour mixture through a fine mesh sieve into a bowl with a pour spout or a large meauring cup then divide it between four custard cups, ramekins, wine glasses, or other containers of your choice.  Chill in refrigerator for 3 to 4 hours or until completely firm.

Garnish as desired with whipped cream, chopped hazelnuts, and/or pomegranate arils.

Disclosure: I am working with Pacific Natural Foods as a guest judge for their Everyday Chef Challenge.  I was provided with a box of Pacific Natural Foods products, but am not being compensated in any other way.  Recipe and opinions expressed are my own.