This authentic pasta dish is simple and it relies on two basic principles; perfect base ingredients and an understanding of the balance of flavour and texture of the pasta to enjoy your fresh truffles at their best.
In Alba, the world's capital of white truffles, Tagliolini, or as it is known locally, Tajarin pasta is used. It has a very high egg yolk content and is a thinner version of fettuccine.
The Tajarin is noodle-like in thickness, the biggest benefit of using this type of pasta is not only the wholesome texture on the palate but also the thin ribbons allow the flavour of truffle to work its way through the butter coated strands obtaining a much more fulfilling experience as opposed to a much lower truffle to pasta ratio.
Quite often the pasta is cooked, tossed in butter then served on a warm plate with the truffles sliced over it at the table. This method has a major flaw in that the amount of butter, if not measured, can be too much or too little so you end up with dry sticky pasta or a greasy one. The experience is far greater if every mouthful from start to finish is as balanced as the last.
The use of good quality unsalted butter is paramount, the pasta should be homemade or bought fresh, alternatively a very high-quality bronze die pasta will suffice.
The use of parmesan is optional but this recipe calls for it, however, a mild parmesan is preferred as not to overpower the flavour of the white truffle. This method requires making a sauce from water/stock, butter, and parmesan to coat the pasta perfectly offering the ultimate addition to fresh pasta which is both light and flavoursome. If you are using dried pasta a basic rule is to double the sauce recipe as dried pasta once drained is much more thirsty. If you are cooking for large quantities coat the pasta in several portion batches.
|Servings:||4 Pasta Course|
|Prep Time:||10 Mins|
|Cook Time:||10 Mins|
|Total Time:||20 Mins|
- 250g Fettuccine Pasta
- 40g Fresh White Truffle
- 250ml Water or Fresh Chicken/Vegetable Stock
- 200g Cold diced unsalted butter
- 75g freshly grated Parmesan cheese
- Salt & Pepper
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Remove the fresh truffle from the fridge at least an hour before serving. Carefully give it a quick rinse under cold running water, with a small brush remove any excess dirt and dry with a paper towel and set aside. Once the truffle has reached room temperature it will release a far greater aroma.
Fill a large saucepan with water and place on a high heat to come to the boil. Separately, in a small saucepan, bring the stock to a rapid boil, remove from the heat, add the butter and whisk briskly until it has emulsified into the water. Return to the heat, add the parmesan and whisk until melted. The sauce should be a silky emulsion. Taste, season accordingly and set aside.
Once the saucepan of water has come to the boil add a generous pinch of salt, followed by the pasta, bring back to the boil, stirring occasionally to prevent the pasta from sticking together. Cook the pasta according to instructions or until al dente. When the pasta is cooked, strain and shake off any excess water.
Place a large frying pan over moderate heat, and pour in the sauce. Bring to a rolling boil, add the cooked pasta and stir rapidly until the pasta is completely coated. Check the seasoning then divide into 4 pre-heated bowls, spooning any remaining sauce over the top.
Using the truffle slicer on the thinnest setting shave the fresh truffle over the top. A standard restaurant portion is around 7-8 shavings, which is around 3-4grams per person. For this dish, we recommend at least 10-12 shavings which is around 6-8grams per person. Though it is better to shave the truffles once at the beginning and again halfway through the dish.
If using black truffle it is important to let the truffles heat through to bring out their full flavour and aroma.
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