It's mid-summer and the weather is hot and humid. These evenings call for serving an easy, light dessert. Offer the kids ice cream, but for the adults try this surprisingly elegant recipe adapted from Nigella Lawson's holiday cookbook, Nigella's Christmas. The ratio of gelatin to liquid creates a soft, lush treat that will please and surprise those who are skeptical of gelatin dishes.
1 bottle Prosecco (750 ml)
1 cup water
1 1/2 cups superfine sugar
4 tsp. unflavored powder gelatin
1/2 tsp. vanilla
Tip: Don't buy superfine sugar if you have a food processor. Instead, process regular sugar in the food processor for a few minutes and you will make your own very fine sugar.
Place the 1 cup of water into a bowl and add the 4 tsp. of gelatin. Let this mixture soak.
Into a sauce pan, add the Prosecco and sugar; gently stir to combine. Bring the wine and sugar mixture to a boil and boil for one minute. Do not stir while the mixture is heating and boiling. Add vanilla and allow mixture to gently boil for another minute. Remove from heat.
Pour 1 cup of the hot sugar-wine mixture into the bowl with the water and gelatin. Stir until completely combined. Pour the all the gelatin mixture into the sauce pan containing the balance of the wine and sugar mixture and again stir to completely combine. Finally, pour everything back into the bowl and stir again. These steps are taken to ensure that all the ingredients are completely combined.
Pour everything into a clean bowl, cover with plastic wrap, and refrigerate overnight.
Spoon gelatin into dessert dishes and top with a few raspberries and dot of whipped cream. Sit outside under the summer stars and enjoy.