It is fresh truffle season here in Australia. Our truffles are becoming well known, with a stronger aroma than the European black truffle. Wonderful! Michele ordered one large truffle from Tasmanian truffles online ( tastruffles.com.au )and it arrived 3 days later in a small styrofoam box. Even though the box was tightly sealed I knew exactly what was inside – the perfume was unmistakable! First the small Central Tilba post office, then my kitchen filled with the wonderful scent.
Truffles have such a subtle flavour that you should use them with foods that do not overwhelm them. Eggs, rice and pasta are ideal.
Miranda and I decided to make pasta and had a lengthy discussion on how to combine it with the truffle.
It had to be freshly made pasta of course, made with the eggs that I had sealed in a bag with the truffle so that they absorbed some of its aroma. We decided on a cream reduction, adding some truffle while simmering the cream and then enriching the cream with an egg yolk.
I have to say it was a great success. The rich truffle sauce coated the tagliatelle beautifully and then we grated more truffle over the pasta when it was served. I was surprised how strong the perfume was. It is not as intense as a fresh white truffle from Alba but it comes close. And there is nothing like eating a truffle fresh and in season which we can only do with those that are locally grown.
We were seven people so I calculated 1 egg per person and 110 g of tripple- sifted plain flour per person plus extra for dusting
• Samson measured out and sifted the flour, added the eggs and a little salt
• Miranda kneaded the pasta
• Griffin helped me roll out and cut the pasta
• here the pasta is ready to be cooked in boiling water
• to make the sauce I simmered, just for a few minutes, 600 ml of our local pure Jersey cream from Tilba, so thick and delicious
• I added a generous measure of truffle shavings and let the mixture gently simmer for a further few minutes
• I then took the cream off the flame and added an egg yolk which I whisked in
• this thickened the truffle cream
• in plenty of boiling, salted water I cooked the tagliatelle for just 4 minutes
• they still have to be a little bit ‘al dente’
• I strained them, reserving about a cup of the pasta water
• poured them into a warm serving dish and added the reserved cup of water
• I then added the cream and truffle sauce and mixed it well through
• finally I grated more truffle shavings on top and served it
• I placed the rest of the truffle with a shaver on the table
• everybody could then add their own truffle shavings ‘a discrétion’
It’s a simple but very luxurious dish that really celebrates our exceptional local product.