Sunday, January 6, 2013

Nut and Seed Nougat (#SundaySupper Bucket List!)

Nut n' Seed NougatThis holiday season was the catch-all for recipes I always wanted to try and conquer. Bubble Sugar and Coffee Bean Brittle were two of them, along with a few other candy and bread recipes I still haven't gotten around to sharing (bad blogger!), Indian Pancake Syrup and those Vintage Speculaas. But when I found the nut-filled French-Italian nougat recipe in The Liddabit Sweets Candy Cookbook, it looked like something that would use up egg whites from the shortbreads we made and could be the star of my gift baskets - especially since so many recipients were European!

Since I've been making a lot of candy this year, I was somewhat familiar with the process, and having done marshmallows in particular definitely helped. I made a few changes to the original recipe based on what I had in the house (i.e. not enough almonds, or corn syrup, and I wanted to play with the vanilla sugar I had). However, I was not prepared with how stiff the whipped mixture really gets - the direction to "stir the nuts" into the plain base was more like "try not to break your spatula / your arms", and (partially because I slightly overcooked the sugar syrup) cutting it was one of the hardest things either my mom or I had ever experienced. It was well received though, and made a ton so was perfect for gifts.

Would I make it again? Probably not. As much as people liked it, it was far too hard to work with and definitely too hard to cut on my own. But, the point is that I did try it, and I learned, and gosh darn it I conquered that mound of rock hard sugar!

Nougat Slices

This week’s Sunday Supper is all about trying something new, something that’s been on your bucket list but you have yet to tackle. I'm amazed at the wealth and variety of good eats on our bucket list! Some I hadn't even thought of ever making, until now!

Sunday Supper Specialty Breads:

Sunday Supper Main Dishes:

Sunday Supper Desserts and Snacks:

Don't forget to join the #SundaySupper conversation on Twitter this Sunday! We tweet throughout the day, with our weekly chat starting at 7:00PM EST. Simply follow the#SundaySupper hashtag and include it in your tweets to join in the chat! We also have a fabulous #SundaySupper Pinterest board for more fabulous recipes and food photos.

Nut and Seed Nougat
Makes about 64 chunks
Wafer paper, for lining pan
Shortening or coconut oil, for greasing
2 egg whites
1 tsp meringue powder
¼ tsp cream of tartar
½ cup vanilla sugar
2 ½ cups sugar
1 ½ cups honey
½ cup amber agave nectar
¾ cup clear corn syrup
½ tsp sea salt (I used pink Himalayan)
5 tbsp water
1 tbsp pure vanilla extract
½ tsp almond extract
1 ½ cups whole almonds
1 cup whole hazelnuts
1 ½ cups pine nuts
½ cup sunflower seeds
½ cup pumpkin seeds
  1. Line a 9x13" pan with wafer paper and grease the sides of the pan well.
  2. Combine egg whites, meringue powder and cream of tartar in the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the whip.
  3. Beat whites until frothy, then stream in the vanilla sugar while beating until the mixture forms soft peaks. Set aside, but keep it in the mixer.
  4. Combine the regular sugar, honey, agave nectar, corn syrup, salt and water in a saucepan (at least 4-quart size).
  5. Bring to a boil, uncovered and without stirring.
  6. Cook until the syrup reaches 300°F / 149°C.
  7. Begin re-whipping the egg white mixture on medium speed, then wearing oven mitts (I suggest something like the Ove Glove or fingered silicone gloves) pour syrup over egg whites in a thin steady stream down the side of the bowl.
  8. Beat in vanilla and almond extract.
  9. Continue beating at high speed until mixture is stiff (about 5-10 minutes).
  10. Remove bowl from the mixer and immediately begin to work in the nuts and seeds. 
  11. Turn into the pan and press out into an even layer (I used a bench scraper and a greased silicone spatula). 
  12. Cool for 2 hours, then turn out onto a cutting board and chop into pieces with a very sturdy knife. Dust with cornstarch. 
  13. Store in a cornstarch dusted, airtight container.
Amount Per Serving
Calories: 229.9
Total Fat: 5.8 g
Cholesterol: 0.0 mg
Sodium: 13.8 mg
Total Carbs: 23.0 g
Dietary Fiber: 0.9 g
Protein: 2.1 g

10 comments :

Laura Dembowski said...

That looks seriously wonderful! I love nougat but it is so hard to find. I will have to give this recipe a try :)

Lizzy Do said...

Wow, that second shot is beautiful! It looks like something you'd find in a European candy shop! Well done!!!

Cindy said...

It turned out beautful, Sarah! The important thing is that you tried it and you CAN do it! Lovely!

Laura Hunter said...

I am still intrigued to try and make it. But it is good to know about how difficult it is so I can set my expectations. I had some last year at the French market that was dipped in chocolate and it was amazing.

Katy said...

Nougat always reminds me of the short time I spent living in France - yours looks just as good as any sold in a confiserie there!

Nancy @ gottagetbaked said...

I laughed out loud when I read your comment about not breaking your spatula or your arm in the stiff mixture. Isn't it amazing how much effort some recipes end up taking? It makes the final product all the more sweeter to savour, right? Your nougat looks amazing, like something you could buy in a candy store.

Alice @ Hip Foodie Mom said...

I love that so many people made candy!!! And this nougat looks amazing!! Great job!

Jennie @themessybakerblog said...

Nougat, mmm! This looks wonderful!

Erin @ Dinners, Dishes, and Desserts said...

MMMmmm...this sounds amazing!

Anonymous said...

WOW! This looks amazing! I could sink my teeth into that immediately!