FOR THE PANNA COTTA
1.In a small bowl of cool water, submerge the gelatin sheets to soften. They will go from stiff to soft, kind of like the texture of a giant contact lens. Feel one-it's SO cool!
2.In a small saucepan, combine the cream, sugar, and espresso powder. Split the vanilla bean lengthwise down one side, open it up, and scrape out the seeds with a paring knife. Add the seeds and the hull to the pan. Whisk to combine everything.
3.Bring the cream mixture to a boil and then immediately turn off the heat. Remove the softened gelatin sheets from the water and squeeze out the excess water. Add the gelatin sheets to the pan and whisk to combine.
4.Immediately ladle the cream mixture into four 6-ounce ramekins and refrigerate for 2 to 3 hours or
FOR THE CHOCOLATE SAUCE
1.Fill a small saucepan with 1 inch of water and bring it to a boil (BTB).
2.In a medium heatproof bowl, combine the chocolate chips, heavy cream, butter and corn syrup. place the bowl on top of the pan of water (this is a double-boiler setup). Reduce the heat to a simmer. Stir until the chocolate has melted and all the ingredients are combined. Remove and use immediately or store in a warm place until ready to use.
TO UNMOLD THE PANNA COTTA
1.Fill a small saucepan with 1 inch of water and bring to a boil, then turn off the heat. Run a paring knife around the outside edge of the panna cotta to loosen it. Set each ramekin in the saucepan for 10 seconds. Place a small serving plate on top of each ramekin and flip it over to unmold the panna cotta. If it doesn't release, put the ramekin in the water for a few seconds more and try again.
2.To serve, ladle a couple tablespoons of the chocolate sauce around the panna cotta and sprinkle with a few chocolate-covered espresso beans.
*ANNE-NOTATION If you can't find gelatin sheets, you can substitute powdered gelatin, but first you need to "bloom" it in water-which just means dissolving it in a little bit of water until it looks sort of like jelly. It takes only a few minutes. Then you need to dissolve it with your hot liquid-it's easy, but sheets are a lot more fun. To use powdered gelatin in this recipe, first bloom one ¼ ounce envelope in 2 tablespoons water, then add it to the mix, and you're back to business as usual.
Reprinted from Own Your Kitchen by Anne Burrell. Copyright©2013 by Anne Burrell. Photographs copyright©2013 by Quentin Bacon. Published by Clarkson Potter, a division of Random House, Inc.