We have had a busy fall here in Umbria, and have been lucky enough to have visited three white truffle festivals just this past month as Umbria takes great pride in their truffle products. For those of you not familiar with this type of truffle, I am of course not speaking of chocolate truffles, but instead of the lovely tubers that grown underground around the roots of certain trees. (See More Below) As well as selling the real thing, fresh black and white truffles, the market stalls at these festivals sell everything from truffle oil to truffle flavored chocolate, and one of my favorites, truffle butter. Each small town that hosts these festivals does their best to offer visitors a great experience, including the local restaurants who offer full truffle menus. While browsing through one restaurant menu in Montone, I noticed a Truffle Carbonara pasta that used the basic ingredient of eggs, cream and just a touch of cheese to create a delicate pasta dish that would be perfect with shaved truffles on top.
Generally, when you order a plate of pasta with truffles, you are served a plate of fresh pasta tossed with just butter which is then topped with the fragrant freshly shaved truffles just before serving. Although we normally stick to buying black truffles as the whites ones are simply too expensive, my husband decided we needed to splurge for once, and bought two white truffles for us to enjoy that day. (See Photo Below) I modified my usual carbonara recipe, creating the one I am sharing below and for dinner we enjoyed this pasta with shaved white truffles on top. I really loved the creamy sauce with the pasta and felt it offered a rich background that went perfectly with the white truffles. This pasta would be great with black truffles on top, or if unavailable, you could also simply drizzle the pasta with white truffle oil, or add a spoonful of truffle paste or truffle butter.
Known as the diamonds of the culinary world, truffles are prized all over the world for their pungent aroma and distinct flavor. The truffles season is quite short, which causes truffle frenzy each fall in Italy in France as folks try and get their hands on them. Some might describe the aroma of the white truffle of smelling like the earth, or old cheese, but this gastronomical object of desire, from Italy’s Piedmont region, is very famous for its aroma, taste and aphrodisiac qualities. The black truffles are far more common than the adored white truffle, therefore less expensive and much more available, but the aroma and flavor of the white truffle is considered far superior.
Our Truffle Purchases From Montone ~ A Mix Of Black & White
One Perfect White Truffle Shaved To Top This Pasta Dish
Deborah Mele 2011
- 1 Garlic Clove, Finely Chopped
- 1 Tablespoon Butter
- 1/4 Cup White Wine
- 1/3 Cup Heavy Cream
- 1 Large Egg
- 1 Egg Yolk
- 1/2 Cup Parmesan Cheese, Grated
- Salt & Pepper
- 3 Tablespoons Fresh Parsley, Finely Chopped
- 1 Pound Fresh Pasta (Fettuccine or Linguine)
- Black or White Truffles
- or Black or White Truffle Paste or Butter
Cook the garlic over medium heat in the butter until it is light golden brown. Add wine to skillet and cook until it has almost evaporated, then remove from the heat and add the cream. Cook the pasta until it is al dente. Whisk together the eggs, parsley and cheese. Pour the cream mixture over cooked pasta and mix thoroughly. Add the egg mixture salt and pepper to taste, mixing well. Serve, topping with shaved truffles.