“ Brand: Marks & Spencer / Type: Other Desserts „
The dessert we chose in our "Dine for £10" at Marks and Spencer was 2 Sicilian lemon and Limoncello Panna Cottas.
These really appealed to me because I adore Panna Cotta, I like the fresh taste of lemon and I am rather partial to Limoncello liqueur. We brought some back from Italy a few months ago and although I don't often drink it, chilled and poured over strawberries makes a delightful sweet or poured over vanilla ice cream!
As you expect in Marks the box was good quality cardboard in black with yellow writing, and it had a clear window so you could see the desserts. There was also a picture of the Panna cotta on the side of the box. Both top and side had a description of the dessert, and on the other side was a list of ingredients and the nutrition chart.
The box contained 2 Sicilian lemon and limoncello panna cottas which are "refreshing Italian style cream desserts with luscious West Country cream, tangy limoncello liqueur and Sicilian lemon sauce, topped with caramelised orange zest. The desserts which weigh 150grams each were in clear plastic dishes which were nicely shaped, and they looked just like the picture. The pale cream panna cotta was covered with a layer of lemon sauce, about ¼in. and a scattering of orange zest.
I thought the cream or lemon would be the main ingredient but it was water! Then 29% West Country cream, sugar, Concentrated lemon juice, 2% Limoncello liqueur and small amounts of Cornflour, beef gelatine, orange shreds and Lemon oil. There were no artificial colour additives, but some natural colour called Lutein.
Not knowing what Lutein is I checked and discovered that it is found in green leafy vegetables and egg yolks, it absorbs blue light and therefore appears yellow at low concentrations. It is thought it helps prevent eye disease especially cataracts, but I have no idea how much is contained in this dessert.
What did surprise me was the allergy warning that it contains Cow's milk and that it was not suitable for people with nut allergies, but there was no mention that it wasn't suitable for Vegetarians, but it does contain Beef gelatine.
I'm sure you already have a clue that as it contains 29% cream it will be high in calories, so don't be disappointed when I say each pot contains 315 cals! There is sadly 20.7grams of fat, 30.8grams of carbohydrate and just 2.1grams of protein. There is only a trace of salt though so that's a good point! Not something for people on a diet or for everyday desserts but a treat.
The box can easily be recycled, but it depends on local projects whether the plastic pot can be recycled. I admit to having washed mine and will re-use for something, possibly a water pot when painting, or for a small flower arrangement.
My box has a sell and use by date 5 days further on, but no problem there as they have been eaten already! They need storing in the fridge and cannot be frozen.
Did I like it? Oh YES! It was lovely, I dug my spoon through the runny lemon topping which was softer than lemon curd and into the creamy Panna cotta. The two together were a great contrast, the creaminess wasn't too rich because of the both sharp and sweet lemon sauce, and the orange zest was fabulous, it was so tender, with just a little bite.
One complaint, there was a ridge and bump in the base of the pot and even using a teaspoon it was difficult to get all the panna cotta and I didn't want to waste a bit!
Oh my goodness are you sitting down! I bought these as part of a deal but I've just checked the receipt and they cost £2.49! I would not normally spend this much on a dessert for 2 people, but if out at a restaurant I would pay £3.50 - £4.50 for a dessert, so I suppose it is reasonable if you consider it that way.
Would I recommend them?
Yes, if bought as part of the Dine in deal, or for a treat, but they are quite expensive and have a high fat content. But oh! They are absolutely delicious!