Homemade Sponge Finger Cookies, delicious, easy and fast to make, they could be the base of so many desserts, or just as good with a cup of coffee or tea.
Song of the day: Saturday Sun - Vance Joy.
The weekend is for family, for lazy starts, for good laughs, long walks, and for baking. Although I love to bake every day of the week, the weekend has a special taste.
In the weekend time is on your side, there is no rushing to get anywhere, you can savor each moment you spend doing what you love doing, and for me, after enjoying a good breakfast with Loreto, it is "let's get messy in the kitchen!". If it is a sunny morning, like these beautiful days we're having, the pleasure is even doubled. I decide on what I want to bake, collect all the ingredients I need, put an apron on my clothes and a smile on my face.
I was itching to try the silicon sponge finger pan I bought in Rome last time I was there. It makes 15 sponge cookies or ladyfingers, and in the back, it displayed the recipe to make them. It is such a basic recipe if you decide to make it, you probably already have all the ingredients needed. And if you don't have the pan, you can always go free-hand with a piping bag on a baking sheet. They will still be beautiful. And delicious.
The recipe is pretty straightforward: beat up the egg yolks and icing sugar in one bowl, separately beat the egg whites with the rest of the sugar and a pinch of salt, then fold those eggy foams together with the flour/baking powder. Transfer to a pastry bag with a small round tip, pipe (whether free-form on a lined baking sheet or in the special mold), bake, and you're done. Oh, don't forget to sprinkle vanilla sugar (or icing sugar) on top of the cookies before baking. That contributes to helping them rise and gives a nice sweet crusty topping.
I've always loved sponge finger cookies, so light, crispy on the outside and with a soft, melt-in-your-mouth texture. Eating just one does not seem enough. My grandma always had a bag of sponge finger cookies in the kitchen cupboard so when I got back from school I had something sweet to munch on. That, or a slice of bread with Nutella. In my parents' place, we always had bags of ladyfingers in case we wanted to make Tiramisu. And that we did quite often.
I recently made a Chocolate and Mascarpone Cream Tiramisu with these homemade sponge finger cookies and the result was incredible. They held their shape and texture, only to be moistened and infused by the espresso. But they are quite lovely also on their own, with a cup of coffee by their side. This is an exceptional dipping cookie, and you all know, by now, that I am an advocate for dunking cookies in my coffee or cappuccino.
Sponge fingers, ladyfingers, or Savoiardi?
Sponge fingers, ladyfingers, or Savoiardi in Italian, are simple cookies to make and can be used in so many desserts: not only Tiramisu but trifles, puddings, layered desserts, Charlotte, sandwich cookies, or enjoyed on their own. Their texture can range from soft and slightly chewy to dry and crisp, depending on how long they're in the oven and whether they're baked free-form or in special molds like the one I used. In the end, it all boils down to your personal preference. Since I wanted to use them in the Tiramisu, I wanted a drier, more absorbent texture, so I left them in the oven a little longer. Once cooled, you can use the ladyfingers right away or stash them in an airtight container until needed.
The recipe makes for only 15 sponge finger cookies. I made two batches, but I did not double the recipe, I just made it at two different times. Few ladyfingers did not make it to the Tiramisu, they were enjoyed plain with a nice coffee. A due reward for a hard-working blogger 🙂 .
Happy weekend. Enjoy!
Song of the day: Saturday Sun - Vance Joy.Print
- 70 g organic, unbleached, all-purpose flour (I used 00 flour)
- 40 g icing (powdered) sugar
- 2 small eggs, organic, free-range
- 8 g baking powder
- pinch salt
- vanilla sugar (or icing sugar), for dusting on top of the cookies before baking
- Preheat the oven to 180° C (350° F) and lightly grease the sponge finger pan (or line a baking sheet with parchment paper or silicon mat).
- Whip the egg yolks with 30 g icing sugar into a froth.
- Separately whip egg whites into a froth together with the remaining 10 g icing sugar and a pinch of salt.
- Blend gently the froth from the egg white with the yolk froth and add flour blended with baking powder.
- Use a piping bag with a small round tip to apply the batter to the greased sponge finger pan (or go free-form on the lined baking sheet).
- Dust vanilla (or icing) sugar on top of the cookies.
- Bake for 12-15 minutes, or until lightly golden.
- For drier cookies, turn off the oven, open the door, and let them cool inside for 5 minutes.
- Take out of the oven, and cool sponge cookies to room temperature directly on the pan, then transfer to an airtight container as soon as possible (they will begin softening in the air if they sit out after they have cooled).
They last for a couple of weeks in an airtight container at room temperature.
To make enough cookies for a Tiramisu you need to double the recipe.
To make them gluten-free, use the above recipe, replacing the 00 flour with 75 g gluten-free flour blend + 15 g cornstarch.
- Prep Time: 15
- Cook Time: 15 minutes
- Category: Cookies
- Method: Baking
- Cuisine: Italian
Ricetta in ItalianoPrint
- 70 g di farina 0 oppure 00
- 40 g di zucchero a velo
- 2 uova piccole, biologiche, da allevamento a terra
- ½ di bustina lievito (8 g)
- 1 pizzico di sale
- ½ busta di zucchero vanigliato, per decorare
- Pre-riscaldare il forno a 180° C.
- Sbattere i tuorli con 30 g di zucchero a velo fino ad ottenere un composto spumoso.
- Montare a neve gli albumi con i restanti 10 g di zucchero a velo e un pizzico di sale.
- Amalgamare i due composti e aggiungere la farina e il lievito, setacciati.
- Servirsi di una sac-à-poche con beccuccio piccolo per distribuire l'impasto nello stampo per savoiardi.
- Cospargere ogni biscotto di zucchero vanigliato prima di infornare.
- Cuocere in forno per circa 12-15 minuti, a fino a quando dorati.
- Spegnere il forno, aprire lo sportello, e lasciarli raffreddare all’interno per qualche minuto.
- Togliere dal forno e far raffreddare completamente nello stampo su di una gratella, poi riporre in una scatola con chiusura ermetica (se restano all'aria si ammorbidiscono),
Per utilizzare i Savoiardi in un Tiramisu di 22 cm di diametro avrete bisogno di raddoppiare le dosi della ricetta.
Per realizzarli senza glutine, sostituite la farina 00 con 75 g di farina senza glutine miscelata a 15 g di amido di mais.
- Prep Time: 15
- Cook Time: 15
- Category: Biscotti
- Method: Al forno
- Cuisine: Italiana
I love baking and kneading dough because it takes me to a happy place in my soul.