I baci di dama (lady’s kisses) are cookies originating from Piedmont, more precisely from Tortona. Their origin dates back to about two centuries ago, and they were traditionally prepared with Piedmontese hazelnuts. Hazelnuts are in fact an excellent product of Piedmont, very common and cheaper than almonds at that time.
It is only recently that the recipe has been modified, substituting almonds for hazelnuts, resulting in a new patent called ‘golden kiss’. The classic and traditional ones date back to the time when King Victor Emmanuel II reigned in the House of Savoy.
One day he asked the cooks of the court to taste a new sweet, tired of the usual classic shapes. The Baci di Dama (lady’s kisses) were approved and they became the court’s dessert.
The shape recalls two lovers intent on exchanging a romantic kiss, just like the two round cookies which are joined and bound with the cocoa cream.
Today there are many versions, such as the baci di Alassio, a typical Ligurian cookie made with cocoa in the dough and honey. There is also a coconut variant and one with pistachios for those with a sweet tooth.
Toast the whole hazelnuts in the oven at 180° (356 F) and allow to cool before pulverizing them with a mixer.
Combine the flour with the icing sugar and hazelnut powder.
Add the cold refrigerated butto in pieces and mix. Finally add the egg.
Chill the dough in the refrigerator for 30 minutes.
Make 1 inch round balls (they will flatten out during baking).
Bake for 15 minutes at 150° (302 F) and let cool.
Meanwhile, melt the chocolate in a bain-marie and place the correct amount on the cookie to make the other stick.
Allow to cool and consume.
You can replace the hazelnut powder with almond powder according to your personal taste.