Saturday, January 23, 2010
France Fact IV
French Chefs and the French alike can't get enough of their truffles.
In the states you see a lot of truffle oils and flavored truffle items like butter and...well, oil. Come to think of it, in California I had only seen truffle in the form of oil and maybe once or twice whole.
At the restaurant here we get in little jarred containers filled with shaved truffle that's been soaking in oil, which is my person favorite. It's delicious and has the consistency of jarred jalapenos or kimchi. They use it seasoning soups and sauces by emulsifying it in with an immersion blender. It is also a main ingredient to one of my favorite dishes at the restaurant- a fried piece of brie with this shaved truffle, fried in a pastry layer.
Mainly though, we have whole truffles. Lots of them. Usually black that I shave and then slice up into little julienne strips to be garnishes. We also get in white truffles, which are so neat! In my opinion these don't taste like much of anything, unfortunately. While Gina and I were shaving them one day we tried a few thin pieces and all we could taste is what I can imagine a wet cave tasting like and dirt!
So for the record, buy white truffle oil but stick to jarred and whole black truffles the next time you're in the mood to make something decadent. Right, like I'm going to be buying whole truffles when I go back to the states for my dinner parties...well, I guess you never know...
FACT: Did you know truffles grow underground and are sniffed out by special truffle smelling pigs? How awesome is that? Even more awesome is that there are dogs that do it too. I read an article recently about some up in Oregon here.