After we had to cancel our reservations for the truffle tasting dinner a few weeks back, Aron and I decided to splurge and order ourselves an ounce of Perigord Black truffle from the gourmet food supplier, D’Artagnan. I’d always been curious about cooking with fresh truffle and it felt justifiable after saving money on the dinner out.
Two walnut-sized pieces of black truffle arrived one afternoon, wrapped in a bag within in a small freezer box. You could smell them the moment you lifted the lid. We decided to store them with half a dozen eggs in a sealed box in our fridge: the aroma can permeate the egg’s shell and flavor the yolks. The important thing is to be sure that there’s no moisture with the truffle and that it is used within a few days.
When it was time to slice the truffle, I turned first to a mandolin, but ours only has one setting and the slices were a little too thick. I found a standard peeler to be a better substitute to a proper truffle shaver.
Following this recipe on the Napa Truffle Festival website, I set aside some truffle for topping and chopped the rest for mixing into the cooked Fettuccine. I brought my pot of water to a boil and then rested a bowl atop and melted a generous serving of butter over the water. To the melted butter I added salt and my truffle-infused eggs and then whisked the mixture until it was warm and just about to start setting. I added the chopped truffle and set this aside while I cooked the pasta.
Next I added the cooked and drained pasta to the bowl with the eggs, butter, and chopped truffles. The hot pasta continued to cook the eggs (slightly–not enough that I’d share this with 1-1/2-year old Hudson, but to a degree that I could enjoy).
It was pretty amazing.
Caveat: when you cook the a dish with truffles yourself, I think it’s a little harder to really taste them. I think in working with them, I started to get immune to the scent! Isn’t that tragic?!
Still, and here’s the thing: this method… with the eggs and the (generous portion of) butter and then adding the cooked pasta to that heavenly mix? Brilliant. Rich, buttery, eggy, delicious Fettuccine. I can’t wait to try it with lots of cracked black pepper and parmesan. Or asparagus and sweet spring peas. Or maybe some mushroom and truffled salt? Try it.
P.S. How I’m going to retire on the laurels of my truffle-hunting dog.