Recipe: Tagliarelle with truffle butter
Serves 2 or 3 for dinner, 4 or 5 for a side dish or appetizer
OMG is this delicious. I keep the key ingredients in my pantry and freezer so in 15 minutes I can whip up a very fancy dinner. It's the essence of my philosophy: If you start with really good ingredients, you don't need to cook much to make something delicious. I buy Cipriani pasta at a specialty food store and three-ounce packages of white truffle butter from dartagnan.com and keep them on hand for a quick — but very special! — dinner.
• Kosher salt
• 1/2 cup heavy cream
• 3 ounces white truffle butter (see note)
• 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.
White truffles are very expensive wild fungi from Italy's Piedmont region. I'm not a fan of white truffle oil (it sometimes has a metallic flavor), but D'Artagnan makes 3-ounce containers of truffle butter with pieces of white truffles. It's delicious and quite inexpensive.
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