My short-order cook alter ego, Lazy Person (LP), returned home from shopping with a rare find inside the grocery tote: a box of tagliatelle pasta made with semolina whole wheat flour and egg.
What’s so rare about that?
Well, these golden-yellow artisan “cuts” stand head and shoulders above the competitors as each and every winding strand is imbedded with black summer truffles. And, that’s why these tagliatelle are billed as Tartufissima (very, very truffled).
Created and produced by TartufLanghe in the bounty-rich Langhe area around Alba in the Piedmont region of northwestern Italy — where truffles, both black and white, along with excellent cheeses and outstanding wines are revered — Tartufissima Tagliatelle singlehandedly pioneered the practice of adding truffles to pasta dough.
The brainchild of Beppe Montanaro and Domenica Bertolusso — founder-owners of TartufLanghe — these handmade strands from heaven were recognized for their culinary ingenuity and awarded the “best new product of the year” prize at the 1992 Fancy Food Show in New York.
Since their Big Apple debut, Tartufissima Tagliatelle, along with the rest of the TartufLanghe’s truffle specialties — risotto, polenta and fonduta — have found their way out of the Langhe and into world-renown restaurants and gourmet shops all around the globe.
Sounding more and more like a product placement advert, and less and less like a quick-‘n’-easy LP recipe, let me close out the huckstering by simply telling you that you can order online and have all the TartufLanghe gastronomic delights express shipped right to your front door. Just click HERE for details.
Inching ever-so-closely to the galley door, let me preface our next exercise in the kitchen with the number 3. Why? Because this dish only calls for three ingredients: the black truffle-laden tagliatelle, a bit of butter and some Parmigiano-Reggiano cheese.
It’ll be a snap as this dish plates in under 10 min.
Step-1: Fill a pot with water, cover, set on HIGH and bring to a boil.
Step-2: In a skillet, lay in the butter, set on LOW-MEDIUM and rotate around until all the butter has melted. Place aside.
Step-3: Water is boiling. Uncover, add 1 tbsp of sea salt, drop the tagliatelle pasta down, stir briefly then let cook for 4 min.
Step-4: At the 4-min. turn the burner off and drain the pasta.
Step-5: Add the pasta to the melted butter in the skillet, place on MEDIUM-HIGH and sauté for 1 min.
Step-6: Plate the pasta, sprinkle the grated cheese on top and serve.
Step-7: BUON APPETITO!
Recommend Wine Pairing: Malvasia Colli Orientale del Friuli (DOC) – Livio Felluga Winery, Brazzano di Cormons (GO), Italy
Before I go any further, let me briefly explain why pairing wine with black truffles is tricky business.
To begin with, the black truffle is widely known and much appreciated for it’s wild and earthy taste and strong musky aroma that can dominate a dish.
Is the truffle playing second fiddle, or is it the centerpiece ingredient?
If the former, selecting a robust red does well to compliment the musky wild flavors of the fungus.
If the latter, then the dish deserves a lighter, more subtle wine that doesn’t overpower the flavor nor mask the aromatic contributions that the truffle brings to the table.
In our case — the recipe above — the black truffle is the centerpiece flavor of the dish; therefore, I’m going with white over robust red.
Personally, I don’t think there are any better Italian whites than those found straddling the Collio DOC and Colli Orientali del Friuli DOC vineyards of the Friuli-Venezia-Giulia region in the Peninsula’s upper northeast corner. And, it is in Brazzano, near Cormons, that we’re putting opener to cork.
It’s no secret, at least around Italy, that the finest dry Malvasia wine is made in Friuli, and an excellent bottle of that grape can be found at the Livio Felluga Winery, a label that only yields great wines with instantly recognizable fragrances and aromas.
A 100% varietal, Malvasia Colli Orientale del Friuli (DOC) is one of the vintner’s “map label” wines — prized bottles that carry the distinctive artwork that portrays the hills and slopes that have shaped the geography of Livio Felluga wines all over the world.
In the glass, you’ll be immediately drawn to it’s clear, straw-yellow color with greenish reflections. The perfume of this Malvasia is pleasant with an aroma that recalls exotic fruit and white pepper. Dry, fresh and lively, it’s good-bodied on the palate.
And, it holds its own alongside our tagliatelle with black summer truffles, too.
Best served in a tulip-shaped glass at 8-10° C.
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