When I left Canada to complete a post-doctoral residency in periodontics, my first birthday away was celebrated with this cake made by my dear friend Sylvie, another French Canadian I had met at The University of Pennsylvania. The cake was so different than anything I had ever had. The very pretty cake was made of two layers: a creamy panna cotta-like layer dotted with luscious raspberries over a base layer of moist white cake. Light and delicious, it was a really special confection that made for a memorable birthday. Whenever I need a celebratory cake, this recipe is one I turn to again and again. I like that it can be made in advance. The cake layer can even be made and frozen for several days right in the springform pan. The recipe never fails to delight and surprise. “What is in this?” Yogurt, cream, very little sugar and gelatin! Calling it a panna cotta cake is the best descriptive term I have come up with. In French its original name was “Délice aux framboises”. Oh la la, it sure is!
Raspberry Panna Cotta Cake
1/2 of a white cake mix, prepared as directed, in a 9″ springform pan, cooled
4 t Knox gelatin(2envelopes)
1/4 c cold water
1/2 c sugar
3/4 c milk
3/4 c half and half cream(use heavy cream if using low fat milk)
2 1/4 c plain whole milk European style yogurt(not Greek)
1 t vanilla
12 oz fresh raspberries(2 containers)
Spread the raspberries over the cake base. Dissolve gelatin in water. In a small saucepan heat milk, cream and sugar until sugar is dissolved. Remove from heat and add gelatin, whisking to mix thoroughly and prevent clumping. Add yogurt and vanilla. Mix well. Pour over the raspberries. Chill at least 2 hours or overnight. Run knife around sides to loosen and remove sides of pan. Serves 10.