Nudo’s Italian Torrone and Adopt A Tea Garden Program; Plus A Food Gal Giveaway

An Italian specialty candy perfect for the holidays.

An Italian specialty candy perfect for the holidays.


Sticky, sweet and crunchy — that’s Italian torrone.

This traditional confection is made the time-honored way by hand by Torronificio Trapani in Southern Italy with a family recipe that’s more than 200 years old.

Now, Nudo Italia has made it available in the United States. The gourmet food company sells a 7-ounce, 10-inch-long slab for $15.

Recently, I had a chance to try a sample.

The white nougat looks like Christmas, itself. It’s packed to the gills with almonds, too. Orange honey gives it a rounder flavor. And the bitter edge of the almonds ensures this treat isn’t cloying.

It’s a stick-to-your-teeth candy that’s fairly addictive.

A nice up of tea is a perfect accompaniment, what with its welcome tannins to counteract the sweetness.

A sample from the Darjeeling Adopt a Tea Garden program.

A sample from the Darjeeling Adopt-A-Tea-Garden program.

Nudo offers a unique way to enjoy its tea by offering a Darjeeling Adopt-A-Tea-Garden program. Here’s how it works: Choose one of five Nudo tea gardens in Darjeeling, India to adopt for a year. Each features a different flavor profile. Then, each quarter for $29 per quarter, you’ll receive a 125-gram tin of loose leaf tea straight from your garden. Each container is enough for 40 cups.

In this way, you’re helping to support a local, family tea farm in India.

You’ll also get quite the tea education in the process by being able to taste tea from the same garden throughout the year, discovering how the flavors change over time. For instance, I found the First Flush (summer harvest) I sampled to be quite delicate and green tasting. In comparison, the Monsoon Flush (winter harvest) was quite robust and earthy.

CONTEST: One lucky Food Gal reader will win not only a sample of Nudo Italia’s torrone, but a membership in the Darjeeling Adopt-A-Tea-Garden program that includes an “adoption certificate” plus one shipment of Golden Harvest Darjeeling tea. Entries, limited to those in the continental United States, will be accepted through midnight PST Nov. 30. Winner will be announced Dec. 2.

How to win?

Playing off the sticky nature of torrone, tell me what really sticks in your craw. Best answer wins the prize.

Here’s my own response:

“Litterbugs. I have seen people leave coffee cups on parking lot staircases when a garbage can was three feet away. I have seen drivers toss a still-full soda cup out their window on the road. I have witnessed a teenager waiting at an airport gate, spill her french fries on the floor, then walk away without even attempting to pick them up. And I have done laundry in an apartment complex where a woman has walked in, emptied the dryer screen, and actually tossed the mound of lint on the floor rather than deposit it in the waste can right next to her. Somehow, I doubt these people would do this in their own home. But they feel they have the license to do this in public spaces? Come on, people, clean up your act.”

WINNER OF LAST WEEK’S CONTEST: In the previous Food Gal contest, I asked you to tell me about a random act of kindness you performed recently. The winner will receive three bags of KIND Healthy Grains Clusters.

Big clusters of granola you can eat with your fingers.

Big clusters of granola you can eat with your fingers.

Congrats to:

Jeffrey, who wrote, “My recent gesture of kindness was more or less an act of mutualism in my eyes but it meant a lot to my neighbors. The leaves have been falling and the elderly couple across the street have been unable to care for their yard. She has been in and out of the hospital and he has been caring for her day and night. My sons and I spent the evening raking their yard and hauling off the leaves. The benefits I received was not only the exercise but teaching my kids invaluable life lessons that will help mold them into proper gentlemen.”

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  • Oh no! I’m sucker for nougat, but my teeth aren’t so sure;)
    Carolyn, I hope you have a delicious Thanksgiving!

  • My anger builder is the way some people assume that just because you are being nice to them by helping and doing things for them, that it is always to be expected. I live in a senior development. I am probably the youngest individual with a home here. I decided that some of the ladies here, whose husbands had passed away may need some help from time to time, even though there is a van that goes to a large mall once a week and to the market on another for no charge. The city also has a senior van that will take seniors anywhere to shop or for appointments for about $2 each way 7 days a week. I had driven this woman to her doctors appointments a few times and whenever she had to call the ambulance for her husband she would call me to keep her company in the ER as she was afraid to be there alone. When he became really ill i drove her to the hospital daily between 11am/12noon and stayed with her as perhaps her request between 6pm/7pm daily FOR OVER 4 MONTHS. Just A thank you would have been nice. And she is not the only one. For some reason since i am younger, i assume that they feel i am capable of doing any and everything for them including repairing windows, picking up specials at the market, taking them shopping for clothing etc. etc. and if i happen to say i cannot do it one time, i am suddenly a horrid person. It can be quite discouraging.

  • Love nougats and the tea must be perfect with it. Congratulations on your book Carolyn and wish you a Happy Thanksgiving! 🙂

  • I love all these giveaways you’ve been hosting! One of biggest gripes is bad grammar. I understand in text messages (or rap lyrics) there are some FEW exceptions, but in emails, store banners, pretty much anything that is public, whenever I see a misused apostrophe, contraction, or synonym, a part of my spelling-bee-champion self cries out in agony.

    Happy Thanksgiving!!

  • It drives me crazy when I hold a door open for someone and they walk though without even acknowledging my existence. I don’t need a party, a shoulder pat, or even a thank you, but a small gesture like eye contact and a smile goes a long way!

  • Ashley Fitzgerald

    My biggest pet peeve? People who hog the sidewalk. I live in Chicago and it drives me crazy when large groups walk straight towards you and don’t move at all for the oncoming sidewalk traffic (like myself!). It’s so inconsiderate and really gets under my skin.

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