Truffles. I love them.
Some people can’t stand the smell, texture, taste even the knobbly sight of them…but to me, truffles are the taste of mother earth, and perhaps more than that, the mother earth of Istria. Truffles in cheese, truffles on pizza, truffles tossed through pasta. But I pretty much only eat truffles when in Croatia and then take a jar (or two) away with me to Sydney. The pasta of choice when served with an Istrian truffle is fuži (twirly pasta) and this is the first time I’ve made my very own fuži to go with this truffley goodness.
In Istria, the forests along the Mira River make the perfect home for this famous fungus. The town of Buzet sits in the heart of this pungenty goodness and is known as ‘the city of truffles.’ Buzet is known for both its black and white truffles and you can even do tours to find your own truffles. Anyway, I used black truffles in this recipe.
While I love this recipe, I feel like you could add a touch more salt and possibly a clove (or two) of garlic. Super truffle-lovers will probably have a heart attack and say that garlic would ruin the taste of truffle, but I think it would add to it. Anyway, I still have a bit more left in my jar so next week I’ll try this with garlic.
Of course, if you don’t want to make your own pasta, you can use the store bought stuff. It would be sooo far faster. But for those of you who want the authentic Istrian dish, then you gotta make your own.
(For the pasta)
- 350 grams fine flour, sifted
- Two (2) eggs
- One (1) tablespoon of olive oil
- Two (2) tablespoons of white wine
- Pinch of salt
(For the sauce)
- 100 grams of unsalted butter (that’s what I used but perhaps use salted because I felt the recipe needed more salt)
- 50 grams of fresh truffles (I used ones in a glass jar – if using these drain as much of the oil out of them as you possibly can – save the oil and use it over a salad)
- One (1) tablespoon of parsley, finely chopped
- 100mls of water
- Pinch of white pepper
- Four (4) tablespoons finely grated hard sheep’s cheese (I used parmesan)
- To make the fuži sift the flour into a large bowl, make a well in the middle and add the eggs, olive oil, wine, salt and a touch of water and use your hands to combine into a dough. Add some water as you go if the dough gets too dry to work with.
- Once everything is combined take the dough out of the bowl, place onto a large wooden board and roll out the pasta until it’s about a millimetre in thickness.
- Then with a ruler (wash it first) and with a knife cut the dough into 4cm x 4cm squares.
- To make the fuži shape, take the opposite ends of the square and press them together. I found this really difficult and so used a hard straw to put in the middle of square and then could press the corners onto the straw. Some people make their fuži really tight twirls others (like me) make them a bit looser. Each recipe that I’ve seen is a bit different so it’s really up to you.
- In some boiling, salty water add the fuži and cook until tender. This should take no longer than five minutes because you’re dealing with fresh pasta.
- To make the sauce warm the butter in a larger saucepan and when melted add the truffles and fry them for two minutes. Then add the water, pepper, parsley and let it all come to the boil.
- Drain the fuži, add them to the sauce, toss and add the cheese.
- Sprinkle with a bit of extra parsley and serve.
Let me know if you tried it and how it went
Dobar Tek! Zivjeli! (Bon appetit! Cheers and let’s live!)