Ladyfingers originated in the late 15th century at the court of the Duchy of Savoy and were created for a visit by the King of France. Also referred to as Savoiardi, they are a cake-style cookie much like madeleines. If left out, they harden and are great for desserts with creams, like tiramisu.
6 eggs, room temperature
1 cup sugar
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 1/2 cups flour
2 tablespoons cornstarch
Additional sugar for tops
Preheat the oven to 350°F and line a baking sheet with parchment paper or a silicone mat. Separate the egg whites and yolks into two separate mixing bowls. Sift the flour, cornstarch, and salt and set aside.
In a stand mixer fitted with the whisk attachment, beat the egg whites until they form soft peaks. Gradually add 1/2 cup of the sugar and beat until the egg whites have stiff peaks. Set aside. In the mixing bowl with the egg yolks, add the vanilla and the remaining sugar. In a stand mixer fitted with the whisk attachment, beat for 5 minutes until light and yellow in color.
Add the egg yolk mixture to the egg whites, and using a spatula, fold the two together. Do not overmix as it will deflate the mixture. Add the flour by heaping tablespoons into the egg mixture, folding it in as you add it. Continue until all the flour is incorporated.
Transfer the batter into a piping bag. Snip off the end to make a 1/2” opening and pipe the batter into 4” long lines. Leave 2” between the cookies. If your end has a tip, moisten your fingertip with a bit of water and gently press down. Sprinkle sugar over the cookies and bake for 15 minutes in the preheated oven. Allow the cookies to cool for 10 minutes on the baking sheet. If you are using them for tiramisu, allow the cookies to sit uncovered for 1 day, otherwise, store them in an airtight container.
Makes approximately 40 cookies.