Nougat


Between all Sardinian sweets, nougat deserves a special place. Nougat production is a very old Sardinian practice. The first document in which nougat was mentioned, dates back to 1614. In Barbagia nougat is linked to the necessity of making the most of the surrounding natural resources: mountain honey, walnuts and hazelnuts. Today the most renowned nougat production areas are the towns of Aritzo and Tonara, but in the past the practice was carried out also in other surrounding villages. People from Aritzo used to sell their products in Campidano, while people from Tonara, always very competitive with their counterparts, sold their nougats in the north of the island, near Sassari. In the old times, nougat was mixed with a big wooden shovel: a very hard job that could last up to 6 hours. The mixture needed to be constantly stirred, otherwise all the hard job could have been useless. When the honey was warm enough, egg white was added to the mixture, which worked as raising agent. The nougat maker then kept on working on the nougat, until it reached the right consistency and the typical white colour. At the very end, almonds, walnuts or hazelnuts were added to the nougat, which could be transferred into little wooden boxes. Today nougat is made with modern machineries, but the old procedure is still showed to people during fairs and festivals. (Nougat Festival– Tonara – Easter Monday).

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