Tagliderini al Tartufo (Pasta with truffles) from The White Boar in Florence, Italy
Have you ever had a dish while on vacation that you could not forget? There was just something about those flavors that stayed with you and were so incredible that you could not stop thinking about it? (In other words, you drove everyone around you crazy until you had it again!). That is what happened with Mr. Bunkycooks when he traveled to Florence, Italy many years ago (BB or “Before Bunky”).
In fact, this pasta dish made such an impression on the hubs that he could not get it out of his system not wait to have it again. So guess where we had to go and what we had to order when we traveled to Italy together? We had to have this pasta practically the minute we arrived in Florence!
That was when we dined at a lovely little restaurant by the name of Osteria del Cinghiale Biano (The White Boar) and then I truly understood his fascination with the dish. It’s the truffles! Who wouldn’t be head over heels in love with this? (Click here to see where this restaurant is in Florence.)
Mr. Bunkycooks recently decided to get the recipe from Massimo and Marco Masselli (the father and son owners of The White Boar) so that we could recreate this dish at home since we had our beautiful black Périgord truffle from Tom and Tennessee Truffles.
This dish, Tagliderini al Tartufo, is actually made with white truffles and white truffle oil at The White Boar. White truffles originate in Alba, Italy (in the Piedmont region). We improvised in making the dish since we used a black truffle and black truffle oil. We also made homemade pasta, a linguine. You really should make your own pasta when preparing something this special. It will be worth the little extra time you spend in preparation.
If you can find white truffles, we strongly recommend that you use them in this dish since that is the original recipe from The White Boar and white truffles are best suited to pasta dishes (they have a bit of garlic aroma which compliments the pasta). However, we aren’t complaining too much…this was not exactly what we had in Florence, but it was very good. Truffles…butter…pasta…how could you go wrong?
If you read my article on Tennessee Truffles, you might remember that truffles are quite the aphrodisiac, so if you are still trying to decide on something to prepare for your special someone on Valentine’s Day, this might just be the dish you are looking for!
I would also suggest a beautiful Florentine Steak (another delectable specialty from Florence and The White Boar). You can serve the pasta as a first course (appetizer) and the steak as your main course.
Who wouldn’t love you after that meal?
Thank you so much to Massimo and Marco for giving us the recipe and allowing us to use some of the photographs from their website. Be sure to make a reservation at The White Boar if you are fortunate enough to travel to Florence. Our dinner there was one of the most memorable meals of our trip. If you do go, I won’t mind if you take me along in your suitcase! 😉
Marco recommends that you use the best and freshest white truffles you can find. We would advise that you open the package and take a whiff of any truffles that you are considering purchasing. We have found that some of the ones we find locally have lost their pungency. The aroma should fill the air (our truffle permeated an entire room in seconds!). If the truffles do not have a strong aroma, they may be old and have lost their flavor and will not be worth spending the money on. The best white truffles in the United States are coming out of Oregon.
He also says do not add grated Parmesan cheese. This is one pasta dish that definitely does not need it!
I would also recommend that you find a good truffle oil from a reliable purveyor. Many truffle oils are nothing but chemicals, so be sure you know what you are buying is the real thing!
Tagliderini al Tartufo
We did not receive specific amounts to use for this recipe, so get creative and use your cooking skills to make this dish.
Tagliderini pasta or homemade linguine
Extra-virgin olive oil (optional)
Shaved white truffle (for cooking and to finish the dish)
Freshly ground white pepper
Salt a large pot of water for your pasta. Bring to a boil. If using fresh pasta, it will only take a minute or two to cook the pasta. Drain the pasta and set aside, reserving some of the boiling water.
Meanwhile melt some butter in a pan with some sliced white truffle over a low fire. (We combined unsalted butter with a little bit of extra-virgin olive oil). Saute for a minute or two. Once butter is sizzling, you will want to add some of the hot pasta water to your pan to make a sauce.
Add the pasta and combine until the flavors have absorbed and the pasta is heated through. This will only take a minute or two.
Serve topped with freshly ground white pepper, white truffle oil and shaved white truffle.
* If you make this dish using a black truffle, add the shaved black truffle directly to the pasta and the sauce in the pan. Do not heat it with the butter first.