Mandarin Treat

The idea of a cheese jelly in a mandarin orange soup may sound odd but the savoury cheese balances the sweetness of the dessert.

Well, that was what the writer claimed for her recipe of cheese panna cotta in orange soup. If you have ever eaten panna cotta, you know how creamy and rich and awesomely delish it is. Basically in this case, it is a soft white jelly, made with cottage cheese, which gives it a creamier flavour, without the fat. It is served in a soup made from oranges.

Half cup of low fat cottage cheese has only 80 calories as compared to ricotta made with skim milk, which has 170 calories. Of course, there is also another choice, fromage frais, which is also a creamy fresh cheese with lower calories and fat. However, it is harder to get hold of, except at gourmet grocers, which is probably Market Place in town, so nope. I go for convenience.


4 cups low fat milk or soya milk

1 cup cottage cheese

1/3 cup white sugar or to taste

6 tsp gelatine powder


2 cans of mandarins in syrup or 6 mandarins peeled and soaked in 1 cup of syrup

cold water to taste


1. Place milk in a pot together with cheese and sugar. Heat till sugar dissolves, then whisk in gelatine powder.

2. Pour milk mixture into ramekin cups. Leave to cool, then place in refrigerato to set. It will take a couple of hours.

3. If you are using fresh oranges, place 1 cup of sugar in a small pot and add 1 cup of water. Heat gently till sugar dissolves. Leave to cool. Add peeled mandarin segments to marinate segments to marinate for a while. Place oranges in a blender together with its syrup. Process tell it turns into a thick soup. Place blender bowl in the refrigerator till needed.

4. To serve, have a basin of warm water ready. Place the jelly ramekins in it for a minute. Using a knife to loosen the edges, unmould the jelly into a shallow dessert bowl.

5. Pour the orange soup to form a pool round the jelly. Garnish with a whole raspberry/blackberry/strawberry and a mint leaf and serve at once.

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