Known in Italy as “savoiardi” — are sweet, little, fairly dry, finger-shaped sponge cakes.
The Epicurious OnLine Dictionary describes a “ladyfinger” as a “light, delicate sponge cake roughly shaped like a rather large, fat finger. It’s used as an accompaniment to ice cream, puddings and other desserts. Ladyfingers are also employed as an integral part of some desserts, including Charlottes. Ladyfingers can be made at home or purchased in bakeries or supermarkets.”
According to the Parisian cooking school, Le Cordon Bleu, leftover sponge cake, brioche, or genoise cake may be used in place of ladyfingers. They advise cooks to be careful, for ladyfinger batter is very fragile. They recommend folding the flour and yolks in very carefully into the meringue so that the whites don’t lose their volume.
Ladyfingers may be stored up to a week in an airtight container. They may also be frozen to extend their useful life.
Ladyfinger recipes can be found in Classic Techniques of Italian Cooking by Giuliano Bugialli.
An offsite recipe for ladyfingers can be found at:
- Flo Braker’s recipe from The Simple Art of Perfect Baking.