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    THE NIBBLE’s Gourmet News & Views

    Trends, Products & Items Of Note In The World Of Specialty Foods

    This is the blog section of THE NIBBLE. Read all of our content on TheNibble.com,
    the online magazine about gourmet and specialty food.

TIP OF THE DAY: Truffle Salt

black_truffle-salt-fusion-230sq

The more flecks of truffle, the tastier the
salt. Black truffle salt from Fusion.

 

The winter truffle season is nearing its end. But if you didn’t get enough (or couldn’t afford any), there’s a way to enjoy truffle flavor all year round: truffle salt.

BLACK & WHITE TRUFFLE SALT

To make truffle salt, small chips and bits that break off from whole truffles during handling are mixed with sea salt. Truffle salt is sea salt that has been laced with fragrant pieces of black or white truffle.

Black truffles have earthier aroma and flavor; white truffles are lighter. Depending on the origin of the white truffles, they can have garlicky notes. Most people have a personal preference for one or the other where fresh truffles are concerned; but once salt is produced, the variations become more subtle.

Unlike truffle oil, the flavor of which is usually synthesized*, truffle salt typically has pieces of real truffle—although the flavor may be enhanced with truffle oil.

 
*Given the high cost of good truffles, most truffle oils are not made by infusing actual truffles but from synthetic flavors that approximate the flavors and aromas of natural truffles. Some of these truffle oils are excellent, and provide truffle flavor and aroma at an accessible price. There is nothing wrong with using synthetics; without them, there would be no truffle oil, truffle fries, most truffle risotto, etc. As a comparison, most perfumes these days are not made with distilled flower petals, but from synthetic aromas.
 

USES FOR TRUFFLE SALT

  • Butter: sprinkle atop of a bar of butter or a ramekin of butter for the table (you can also buy ready-made truffle butter, a terrific product [read our review]
  • Cheese: on a grilled cheese sandwich, goat cheese, queso asado
  • Dessert: with anything chocolate (brownies, cookies, candies, ice cream), crème brûlée—sprinkle on top instead of sea salt
  • Eggs: in scrambled, omelet or deviled eggs, or a sprinkle on simple hard-boiled eggs
  • Fish: atop grilled fish, seared scallops
  • Meat & Tofu: atop steaks, chops or deluxe burgers
  • Olive Oil: in a dip for bread and crudités; use a pinch in a Champagne or wine vinaigrette
  • Pasta: use with any white sauce, butter or oil dressing; with mushroom ravioli
  • Pâté & Foie Gras: a natural pairing, even with chicken liver mousse
  • Potatoes & Rice: baked, fries, mashed and roasted potatoes; risotto
  • Vegetables: roasted, sautéed, steamed
  • Snacks: homemade pretzels (including cheese pretzels—recipe), hummus, popcorn
  •  

    HOW TO BUY TRUFFLE SALT

    First: truffle salt is pricey, but you only need a pinch. A jar may cost $20 or $25 but will last a long time. Don’t let the sticker shock discourage you.

    Different brands use different truffles, with varying intensities of truffle salt. Your retailer may only have one brand. A good brand of truffle salt will state the percentage of truffles on the label. Look for 5% or more.

    One brand of black truffle salt you can rely on is Cassina Rossa, imported from Italy. Urbani sells a quality white truffle salt, also imported from Italy.

    We typically bring jars as host/hostess gifts. They are much appreciated.

     

    white-black-truffle-salt-ddl-230

    Truffle salt is a great gift for a gourmet cook or foodie. Photo courtesy Dean & Deluca.

     

    EVERYTHING YOU NEED TO KNOW ABOUT TRUFFLES

      





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