Prepare the gelatin:
Place the dry gelatin in a small bowl. Pour cold water over it. Let soak for 5 minutes.
Dissolve by placing it in a container over a small pot of simmering water. Set aside to let cool.
NOTE: Alternatively, you may dissolve the gelatin by heating it for 20 seconds in the microwave, under low power. Do not let it overheat. Let cool.
Prepare the whipped cream:
Place the empty bowl in the freezer to quickly chill.
Using an electric mixer, fitted with a whisk attachment, beat cream on high speed in its pre-chilled mixer bowl.
Just before it becomes soft and billowy, slowly add the sugar and vanilla extract to the whipped cream at the sides of the bowl.
Continue to whip on high as you do.
Whip the cream until it barely starts to stiffen. Stop the mixer.
Take about 2 tablespoons of the cream from the mixer bowl.
Stir it into the cooled gelatin.
Return the cream/ gelatin mixture back into the main mixing bowl with the rest of the semi-whipped cream.
Continue to whip the cream on high until soft peaks form.
Finish beating with wire balloon whisk to adjust consistency, if necessary.