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Torrone

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Torrone is a traditional winter and Christmas confection in Italy and many varieties exist. Traditional versions from Cremona, Lombardy, range widely in texture (morbido, soft and chewy, to duro, hard and brittle) and in flavor (with various citrus flavorings, vanilla, etc., added to the nougat) and may contain whole hazelnuts, almonds and pistachios or only have nut meal added to the nougat. Some commercial versions are dipped in chocolate. The popular recipes have varied with time and differ from one region to the next. Torrone di Benevento from Benevento, Campania, sometimes goes by the historic name Cupedia, which signifies the crumbly version made with hazelnuts. The softer version is made with almonds. Although originally resembling sticky paste, it now differs only marginally from the varieties of Torrone di Cremona. Abruzzo, Sicily and Sardinia also have local versions that may be slightly distinct from the two main denominations from Lombardy and Campania.

The white torrone (which appeared in Cremona, Italy in the early 15th century and later in Montélimar, France, in the 18th century) is made with beaten egg whites and honey. Another variation, the brown torrone (referred to as "mandorlato" in Italy and nougatine in French) is made without egg whites and has a firmer, often crunchy texture. The Viennese or German torrone is essentially a chocolate and nut (usually hazelnut) praline.

In the Venetian town of Cologna Veneta is produced mandorlato, always based on honey, sugar, egg whites and almonds (mandorle in Italian).

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References

Italian torrone, en.wikipedia.org

Nougat, en.wikipedia.org

How to Make Nougat, candy.about.com

Nougat recipes, www.bbc.co.uk