The theme of this torrone post was originally about making
this gorgeous candy for your Valentine, but then I realized what would be even
better than making this for your sweetheart, would be making with your
While very easy, this procedure does take about one and a
half hours to complete, and most of that time is spent standing at the stove, stirring,
which is why tag-teaming this Italian confection makes the job much easier, and
I’ll assume a lot more fun.
By the way, this is the real way to make torrone, and by “real,”
I mean the really old way. Today, most candy makers use a much faster method,
where a caramelized sugar syrup is simply added to the whipped egg whites. I’ve
tried this both ways, and while the modern technique is way faster, I much
prefer this method. It seems to have more soul, whatever that means.
Using this ancient technique, you don’t need to worry about
precise timing, specific temperatures, or potentially painful burns. Besides,
standing and stirring something on the stove for that long is surprisingly
therapeutic. Watching the ingredients slowly, and magically change, as your
home fills with the sweet aroma of warm honey, is almost as enjoyable as the
amazing candy you end up with. Almost.
The visual clues, and times I give in the video should be
enough, but don’t forget the cold water trick I showed you. That’s a great way
to check you work, and sneak a taste. I hope you give this a try very soon.
400 g honey (about 1 1/3 cups)
250 g white sugar (about 1 cup plus 3 tablespoons)
2 large egg whites
1/4 teaspoon vanilla extract
1 rounded tablespoon lemon zest
3 cups roasted almonds (I used Marcona almonds)
1 cup roasted pistachio
2 sheets “wafer” paper (*edible rice paper)
– I used an 8 x 11 baking dish to mold mine in.