These delicious hazelnut cookies, known as ugly but good ( brutti ma buoni in Italian), come from northern Italy. The origins are unsure, some say Piedmont, others Lombardy. Whatever the history, I can tell you that they are very delicious and, in the end, this is what matter most.
- 1 egg white
- 80 grams (1/3 cup + ½ tablespoon) granulated sugar
- 100 grams (2/3 cup) hazelnuts
- Toast the hazelnuts in the oven at 180 degrees °C.
- Spread the nuts in a single layer on a baking sheet and toast until the skins are mostly split and the nuts are light golden brown and fragrant (about 15 minutes).
- Remove from the oven and rub the hazelnuts until the loose skins come off.
- Let them cool completely and pulse in a food processor until coarsely chopped.
- Preheat the oven to 150 °C (300 degrees F).
- Beat the egg white and salt in a bowl with an electric mixer until stiff peaks form.
- Gently fold in the sugar and nuts.
- Spoon the batter on the baking sheet with a teaspoon or a tablespoon (it depends on how big you want your cookies) about 4 cm (1.5 inches) apart.
- Bake until golden brown, about 30 minutes. Remove and place on a wire rack to cool.
- Store the ugly but good cookies in an airtight container for up to 1 week.