At an extrordinary meal at Babbo a few weeks ago, I tasted a friend’s pasta dish that included thinly sliced truffles. The fragrance and flavorÂ were so strong, so overwhelming, that everything else in the dish sort of faded into the background. A few days later, at a specialty food store in the West Village, I bought a small jar of porcini mushrooms preserved in truffle oil. Spread on bread, the flavor was rich, earthy, and again, just overwhelming. A week later, I bought my first bottle of truffle oil.
Truffles, and truffle oil, are not comopents of a dish, they are inevitably the centerpiece. And unlike olive oil, which can be added to nearly anything, truffle oil does not necessarily work in every dish, even with very simple flavors. I drizzled it one head of my roasted pak choi and nearly gagged — it was just wrong, completely.
Like extra virgin olive oil, truffle oil should be added to already-cooked foods, and not exposed to high heat. The incredible fragance that bombards you after pouring it will quickly fade on the stovetop, which is a waste of both money and flavor. And use it sparingly — a tablespoon is often far too much.
These phyllo triangles were a bit of a hassle to make, but the flavor was so excellent that I would make them again in a heartbeat. I recommend this recipe very strongly, particularly if anyone is looking for a first foray into cooking with truffle oil.
Mushroom Triangles with Truffle Oil
10 ounces of baby bella mushrooms
1 tbsp canola oil, plus extra to brush
1 tsp salt
3 large cloves garlic
2 tsp blackÂ truffle oil
15 sheets of phyllo dough, thawed
1. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees.
2. Chop mushrooms into very small pieces, no more than 1/4 inch cubes. Mince garlic.
3. In a medium-size saute pan, cook mushrooms, garlic, salt and canola oil until mushrooms are cooked through. Remove from heat, wait 45 seconds, and then stir in the truffle oil.
4. Cut phyllo sheets into long 4″ strips, trimming excess.
5. Place about 1 1/2 tbsp of mushrooms in the corner of two stacked phyllo strips. Roll the sheets in triangles to the edge of the strip (for a demonstration, click here)
6. Place the rolled triangles on a baking sheet. Brush lighly with canola oil or spray with cooking spray.
7. Bake the triangles for about 3 minutes, or until their trops are golden. Serve.
Makes about 15 triangles.