2 sheets edible rice paper
1 cup (160g) whole almonds
1 cup (140g) pistachio nuts
100g glace cherries, halved
1 1/3 cups (300g) white sugar
1/4 cup (60ml) honey
1/4 cup (60ml) liquid glucose
1/4 cup (60ml) water
Preheat oven to 180°C. Lightly grease the sides of a 15cm square cake pan. Trim the rice paper sheets into two 15cm squares. Place one rice paper square in the base of the prepared pan. Spread almonds over an oven tray. Bake in preheated oven for 10 minutes or until lightly toasted. Remove from oven and place in a bowl with the pistachios and cherries. Set aside.
Combine the sugar, honey, glucose and water in a medium saucepan over low heat. Cook, stirring, and brushing down the sides with a pastry brush dipped in water to remove any sugar crystals, for 5-7 minutes or until sugar dissolves. Increase heat to high and bring to the boil. Cook, without stirring, for 5 minutes or until a sugar thermometer reaches crack stage (154°C).
Meanwhile, use an electric mixer to whisk the eggwhite in a clean, dry bowl until firm peaks form. While beaters are whisking, add the hot sugar syrup in a thin steady stream until all sugar syrup is incorporated. Add the almond mixture and stir to combine.
Working quickly, spoon nougat mixture into the prepared pan. Spread surface to smooth. Place the remaining rice paper sheet over the warm nougat and gently press to the surface. Set aside for 1 hour to cool completely. Turn on to a clean work surface and use a long sharp knife to cut into small squares.
For flavour variations, use a combination of toasted hazelnuts and/or macadamia nuts instead of the almonds or pistachios.
For a soft-textured more chewy nougat, bring the sugar syrup to 140°C (use a sugar thermometer to test temperature) before adding it to the eggwhite. Alternatively, heat the syrup to crack stage, but add it to 2 whisked eggwhites.
For a Middle Eastern flavour, add 1 tsp of orange blossom water or rosewater to the eggwhites in step 3.
Humidity can greatly affect homemade nougat, so to keep your nougat as fresh as possible for longer, wrap in plastic wrap and store in an airtight container at room temperature. Do not keep in the fridge, as the moisture will make the nougat weep.
As you need to be as quick as possible with this recipe, make sure you have all your ingredients ready and prepared before making the syrup.