Truffle mushrooms are a bit like diamonds – rare, and highly prized. However, unlike diamonds, you can actually eat truffles. Let’s have a look into the best ways to do this. Read on to learn more about how to cook truffles mushrooms.
What You'll Learn Today
What Do Truffles Taste Like?
Truffles have a very distinct flavour, though some people say it’s hard to actually define this. Obviously, everyone tastes things differently, so this adds another dimension to trying to work out their flavour!
Most people describe them as meaty, or gamey, and often they are described as tasting the same way as they smell – nutty and earthy.
Still others describe the flavour as a kind of hard cheese type taste – think of a slightly stale Parmesan. While this may not sound appetising on its own, imagine the flavour that it can impart to your cooking!
Different truffles have different tastes, so you will need to experiment with both the white and black kinds, to see which you prefer. All in the name of research, of course!
Interestingly, different truffles can have differences in flavour, depending on where they have been grown. The tree roots they attach themselves to and the different soils in different regions, can all affect the taste of a truffle.
How Do You Cook Truffles?
Because of their costly price tags and unique flavour, it is common to actually use just a very small amount of the truffle in cooking.
Many restaurants shave the mushrooms over pasta dishes, while others cook with the delicately infused oils.
The best way to enjoy these special mushrooms is by making them as simple as possible – too many fancy ingredients and crazy cooking methods will ruin their delicate taste.
In fact, it is best to not actually cook them at all – shaving them over your meal at the last minute will bring out the best in them!
The slightly more common black truffles can stand up to a little gentle heat, and in the case of this one it can actually help to bring out its flavour. Just don’t forget to add some gratings of it right at the end, to make sure you can taste it!
Truffles infused into olive oil to make truffle oil are not cooked at all; simply covered with oil to allow their flavour to seep into the oil.
What Goes Well With Truffles?
Fatty foods are often paired with truffles, as they can help to bring out the flavour. Butter, cream, oils, cheese and various meats are often served alongside, or in dishes with, truffles, for the maximum flavour impact.
Starchy carbohydrates, such as pasta, rice and potatoes are also often used with truffles, as these act as a perfect foil for the delicate flavour, and will not overwhelm the unique taste.
You can make some really good, truffle based recipes to go with your evening pasta – pasta dishes don’t have to be boring!
Other types of mushroom are also a good partner for truffles; far from eclipsing each other, the mushrooms bring out each others’ flavours.
Go with a mild tasting mushroom to pair with your truffle, to enhance the truffle’s natural taste without overwhelming it.
You can make your truffle dish as simple as you like – in fact, this will actually improve the experience of the truffle, as it won’t be fighting with other flavours.
What Flavours Pair With Truffle
Because truffle is a unique, yet not overpowering flavour, it can go well with lots of other things that taste strongly, and still not be overwhelmed.
Truffle is more of a dish enhancer than a main course, and as such it pairs well with a lot of other flavours.
- Cheese, eggs, mushrooms, various vegetables and meat – all are great choices to pair with truffle mushrooms.
- Very strong flavours will overwhelm the taste of the mushrooms, so avoid things like Wasabi and chilli, or you won’t even notice that the truffles are in there.
What Meat Goes With Truffle
You can pair just about any meat with a truffle. They go particularly well with red and gamey meats, such as rabbit and venison, and you can of course go with standard beef.
Chicken and other white meats make a harmonious pairing, though you may have to watch out that the meal doesn’t end up tasting too bland!
You can also pair truffles with all types of fish, and you can be sure of a delicious meal.
What Herb Goes Well With Truffles
Most herbs go really well with mushrooms, as long as you don’t overdo the quantities and overpower the truffles!
Rosemary, Sage, Tarragon and Oregano are common choices to use with truffles. These have their own flavour, but do not overpower the flavour of the truffle.
Dill is another great choice to use with truffles; it is a delicate yet unique, and it can improve the taste of the truffle.
How Do You Eat Truffle Mushrooms?
Because it is so expensive, and such a unique flavouring, you won’t want to be slathering your every meal in truffles and truffle oil!
- You can eat truffles fresh, or you can use truffle oil (in fact, if you have access to fresh truffles and olive oil, you can make your own truffle oil very easily!)
- Truffle oil is generally used as a “finishing” product; drizzled over a pasta dish or infused into rice.
- Cooking with fresh truffles is a different matter; you still don’t want to overuse it, but you can use shavings or gratings of this mushroom liberally in dishes that ask for it (or even those that don’t, if you really love truffles!)
This is a great video for those wanting to try out truffles in a really simple, easy recipe:
Truffles are great for adding a unique depth of flavour to your dishes. You can eat them however you want to, just make sure you don’t use too much and overwhelm your dishes (and your wallet!)