Dinner, Pasta / Grains

Tagliarelle with Truffle Butter

My enjoyment of truffle laced dishes has existed for quite some time, but this like quickly turned to love when I experienced the out-of-the-world deliciousness of the Rosemary-Truffle fries that are served at Chef Will Gilson’s Cambridge based restaurant Garden at the Cellar. If you eat at this establishment I positively demand that you order a side of these phenomenal fries. I don’t care if they don’t “go” with your wine or your entree. If you neglect to try them then you’re a complete and utter fool.

Coincidentally enough (or really not so much) my idol Ina Garten uses truffle butters and oils in her cooking constantly. She also routinely heralds the use of  the D’artagnon brand in various recipes so when I splurged and purchased my Christmas Turkey online from D’artagnan this year I impulsively tossed in a container of white truffle butter as well.  Some of this butter was spread under the skin of my turkey but I also used a portion of it in this pretty pasta dish.

In the end I was amazed at the rich and deep flavor that 3 ounces of silky truffle butter added to the Tagliarelle, or in my case, a package of “not so posh” Tagliatelle from Trader Joe’s. Ringing in at $16 per 8-ounce container I’m still on the fence about whether or not I think this product is a must-have item or simply something you should pick-up on special occasions. Especially as I’m technically supposed to be cutting back on my over-the-top spending habits per my 30 Things I Want To Do Before I Turn 30 list of goals. Either way I think you have to at least try the butter before you completely roll your eyes about the price.

I actually still have a few ounces of butter left. What do you suppose I should make with it next? Honestly, I’m tempted to just spread it on freshly baked bread or rolls but that seems like it might be a bit of a waste. Perhaps a little truffle butter topped steak would be a more civilized destination for the remaining dollops?

Tagliarelle with Truffle Butter
Adapted from the recipe found in Ina Garten’s Back to Basics Cookbook
Serves 2 or 3 for dinner, 4 or 5 for a side dish or appetizer

Kosher salt
1/2 cup heavy cream
3 ounces white truffle butter
Freshly ground black pepper
1 (8.82-ounce) package Cipriani tagliarelle dried pasta or other egg fettuccine
3 tablespoons chopped fresh chives
3 ounces Parmesan, shaved thin with a vegetable peeler

Add 1 tablespoon salt to a large pot of water and bring to a boil. Meanwhile, in a large (12-inch) sauté pan, heat the cream over medium heat until it comes to a simmer. Add the truffle butter, 1 teaspoon salt, and 1/2 teaspoon pepper, lower the heat to very low, and swirl the butter until it melts. Keep warm over very low heat.

Add the pasta to the boiling water and cook for 3 minutes, exactly. (If you’re not using Cipriani pasta, follow the directions on the package). When the pasta is cooked, reserve 1/2 cup of the cooking water, then drain the pasta. Add the drained pasta to the sauté pan and toss it with the truffle-cream mixture. As the pasta absorbs the sauce, add as much of the reserved cooking water as necessary to keep the pasta very creamy.

Serve the pasta in shallow bowls and garnish each serving with a generous sprinkling of chives and shaved Parmesan. Sprinkle with salt and pepper and serve at once.