|Place of origin||Italy|
|Region or state||Cremona|
|Main ingredients||White nougat: sugar or honey, nuts (almonds, walnuts, pistachios, hazelnuts), egg whites, sometimes candied fruit
Brown nougat: sugar or honey, nuts (almonds, walnuts, pistachios, hazelnuts)
Viennese or German nougat: sugar, chocolate, nuts
|Variations||Torrone and turrón|
|Cookbook: Nougat Media: Nougat|
Nougat (US pronunciation: // NOO-gət; UK // NOO-gaa; French pronunciation: [nu.ɡa]) is a family of confections made with sugar or honey, roasted nuts (almonds, walnuts, pistachios, hazelnuts, and macadamia nuts are common), whipped egg whites, and sometimes chopped candied fruit. The consistency of nougat is chewy, and it is used in a variety of candy bars and chocolates. The word nougat comes from Occitan pan nogat (pronounced [ˈpa nuˈɣat]), seemingly from Latin panis nucatus 'nut bread' (the late colloquial Latin adjective nucatum means 'nutted' or 'nutty').
There are three basic kinds of nougat. The first, and most common, is white nougat ("mandorlato" or "torrone" in Italy), made with beaten egg whites and honey; it appeared in Cremona, Italy, in the early 15th century, in Alicante, Spain, probably earlier but with the first published recipe in the 16th century, and in Montélimar, France, in the 18th century. The second is brown nougat (nougatine in French), which is made without egg whites and has a firmer, often crunchy texture. The third is the Viennese or German nougat which is essentially a chocolate and nut (usually hazelnut) praline.
Its name, its shape and its fabrication differ in various countries. In France, it is called "nougat de Montelimar", "nougat de Provence" or "touron catalan". In Spain, it is called "turrón de Xixona", "turrón de Alicante" or "turrón de Agramunt". It also has various names in Italy: "torrone", "copeta", "mandorlato" or "cubbaita". In Morocco, it is called "jabane", "qubbajt" in Malta, "mandolato" in Greece, "gas" in Iran, etc.
Many legends exist around the nougat’s origins. In reality, the first recipes of white nougat were found in an Arabic book from Bagdad from the 10th century. The nougat is then called "nātif". One of these recipes indicates that the "nātif" comes from Harran, a city located between Urfa (south of nowadays Turkey) and Aleppo (in nowadays Syria). A section mention of the "nātif" was found in a triangle between Urfa, Aleppo and Baghdad: at the end of the 10th century, Mohammed Abul-Kassem ibn Hawql, traveler and geographer, explains that he ate some "nātif" in Manbij and in Boukhara, Ouzbekistan"Le nougat dans tous ses états, une histoire méditerranéenne de confiserie, Marie Josèphe Moncorgé, Tambao éditions, 2013". Retrieved 11 January 2016..
One can follow the history of nougat, under different names, in cookbooks written between the 10th and the 16th century: 11th century in Baghdad, 13th century in Aleppo and in Andalusia, 14th century in Cairo and Catalogna where it is called "turron".
Distribution and popularity
Turron, a candy related to the traditional French nougat, is produced in Spain (turrón, or, in Catalan, torró) and some neighboring parts of France, in Cremona, Taurianova and Sicily in Italy (where it is called torrone, or Cupeta from Latin Cupedia; the most famous Sicilian nougat is called cubbaita), Greece (where it is known as mandolato), Malta (where it is known as qubbajd and sold in village festivals).
The "nougat" used as an ingredient in many modern candy bars in the United States and United Kingdom is different from traditional recipes, being a mixture of sucrose and corn syrup aerated with a whipping agent such as egg white or hydrolyzed soya protein or gelatine. It is a preferred and often used ingredient of large candy companies, being inexpensive to make and used as a "filler". It may also have vegetable fats and milk powder added, and is typically combined with nuts, caramel, or chocolate. In contrast, some American confections feature such "nougat" as the primary component, rather than one of several. Varieties of nougat are found in 3 Musketeers, Double Decker, ZERO bars, and Baby Ruth bars.
In Britain, nougat is traditionally made in imitation of the southern European varieties and is still commonly found at fairgrounds and the seaside. The most common industrially produced type is coloured pink and white, the pink often fruit flavoured, and sometimes wrapped in edible rice paper with almonds and cherries, sometimes substituted for peanuts, or omitted altogether.
Nougat is also enjoyed in Australasia and the Far East, where it is sold as a gourmet confection. Golden Boronia, Mondo Nougat, Margaret River Nougat Company and Flying Swan are the most widely known manufacturers in Australasia specializing in the production of European style nougat all year round as opposed to the many European manufacturers which treat the product as a seasonal specialty. The popularity of nougat in Australasia has primarily been driven[clarification needed] by the Australian manufacturers as well as some imported varieties from South Africa and Europe.
In some Francophone countries in the Middle East, Nougat has become a staple of the local confectionery offering. This is particularly evident in Lebanon, where local confectionery makers, especially in Tripoli, produce variations of the sweet in various shapes and forms, often involving rose oil and nuts.
Torrone from Italy includes these same basic ingredients as well as vanilla or citrus flavoring, and is often sandwiched between two very thin sheets of rice paper. In the Venetian town of Cologna Veneta is produced mandorlato, always based on honey, sugar, egg whites and almonds (mandorle in Italian) but with a different taste and harder to bite than torrone. Cologna Veneta is well known for its nougat production.
Australian nougat is produced by a similar method to French and Italian nougat but usually has 50% almonds, it can contain Macadamia nuts, apricots, or other texture modifiers. The nougat is commonly produced in two varieties: soft and crunchy. During candy making, this is done by heating a sugar solution to different temperatures before folding in egg whites and honey.
"Wiener (Viennese) Nougat" is a variant which contains only sugar, cocoa butter, nuts, and cocoa mass, and has a mellow consistency. The nuts used for Viennese nougat are usually hazelnuts. In both Germany and Denmark, Viennese nougat is what has traditionally been associated with and labelled as nougat, while in Denmark the original nougat is referred to as "French nougat". In Germany, gianduja is traditionally called nougat.
Persian nougat, known as Gaz, is a variety that has been produced in Isfahan, Iran and Boldaji, Iran for many centuries by various manufacturers including Boldaji Asli Gaz (Tahmasebi), Ashrafi Gaz, Kermani Gaz, Shirin Gaz, Sekkeh Gaz and others. Gaz can also contain the sugary extract of the root of Tamarix.
A special kind of Gaz is referred to as Nogha (نوقا) in Persian derived from the word Nougat and made mainly in the Azerbaijani regions of Iran. Nogha is almost exclusively made with walnuts instead of pistachios and almonds which are usual for other types of Gaz. The making of Nogha is very much the same as any other Gaz. The difference is that Nogha is usually spread between two very thin layers of wafers and cut into 10x5x5cm sections which are larger than ordinary Gaz cubes.
There are three types of African nougat, or nougati, ranging from the white kurtzati to the black baxtiti, and these mainly contain nuts rather than fruits. The higher fruit-to-nut ratio is most prominent in the brown simchati nougat variety.
Roman nougat includes cherries and nuts.
Recent modifications in the United States has nougat being made with butter, melted marshmallow, white chocolate, powdered milk, and peanuts, almonds, or pistachios.
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- "Manual de mujeres en el cual se contienen muchas y diversas recetas muy buenas". Biblioteca Virtual Miguel de Cervantes. Retrieved 2010-01-19.
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- Gangi, Roberta (2005). "Sicilian Torrone". Best of Sicily Magazine. Retrieved 2008-05-07.
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