Simply Truffles: Recipes and Stories That Capture the Essence of the Black Diamond

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William Morrow Cookbooks

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Celebrated journalist, author, and teacher Patricia Wells reveals the secrets behind the legendary truffle in this charming cookbook—featuring lush color photographs and sixty delectable recipes What delicacy is more revered or less understood than the black truffle? Its scent is heady, its flavor sublime, and lovers of truffles are just as fascinated by the history, lore, and mystique of truffle-hunting as they are eager to eat the truffles themselves. Patricia Wells explores the subject in depth, explaining how to capture the true flavors of this rarity, examining what to do with a single truffle, expanding and embellishing its extraordinary aroma, texture, flavor, and pure gastronomic pleasure. Drawing upon twenty-five years of hands-on research in Provence, the modern world’s capital of the black truffle, she offers sixty tried-and-true, well-tested recipes that capture the truffle’s exceptional and complex flavor. Enjoy Creamy Polenta with Truffles and Poached Eggs for a weekend brunch. Dine on Seared Duck Breast with Truffled Sauce Poulette or Truffle Risotto with Parmesan Broth. For casual entertaining, try Pecorino-Romano and Truffle Pizza. And for a wonderful cold winter evening, whip up a batch of Pumpkin Soup with Truffle Cream, Curry, Pumpkin Seed Oil, and Truffles. In addition to her recipes, Wells provides a range of menu suggestions and wine pairings, perfect for serving food with just a hint of truffle flavor or preparing a holiday feast for friends and family. The story and folklore behind the pursuit of truffles round out this extensive cookbook—perfect for connoisseurs and novices alike.


Patricia Wells
William Morrow Cookbooks
William Morrow Cookbooks
William Morrow Cookbooks
William Morrow Cookbooks
Simply Truffles: Recipes and Stories That Capture the Essence of the Black Diamond
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Latest reviews

5.00 star(s)
5.00 star(s)
5.00 star(s)
Pros: OMG, truffles!!!! Plus good tips for homemade chicken stock.
Cons: None other than too many recipes as noted, and is too many recipes really a con?
First off I must confess two things:  1) I feel somewhat guilty in this crazy economy where so many people are having difficulty maintaining employment and putting food on the table to even be talking about something that can cost thousands of dollars a pound... and 2) I have the Truffle Brothers on speed dial.  On the first confession, I will leave you with this food for thought: that before 2008, 16% of Chinese citizens struggled to pay for food and 9% of Americans, but in 2011 only 6% of Chinese and 19% of Americans struggled to pay for food.  On the second confession, well, I am completely addicted to the sensual, exotic, earthy, incredible smell and taste of truffles.  I must have some every season, and there's always homemade truffle butter in the freezer to get me through the rest of the year.  It was nice to finally see such a lovely book dedicated to this beautiful rarity, and written from the heart of truffleland, Provence, by a woman who has passion for her subject and spent 25 years doing research.

The book has a very good introduction with lots of dreamy information about the truffle before it gets into its sixty recipes.  The recipes have broadened my truffle horizons.  It's nice to have some lighter fare, even salads, although the author does mention that a truffle's best friends are butter, cheese, cream, pasta, potatoes, etc.  There are some truly outstanding recipes, but I might have preferred forty instead of sixty, to have only the most select, awe-inspiring recipes, especially since the ingredient is so precious.  On that note, it's also good to know that if you don't have truffles, all recipes can be substituted with dried wild mushrooms, especially morels.  If you are going to buy truffles, this book is a must -- I think I've paid more for the dirt I wiped off my truffles than the cover price of this book, so it is good value to help you get the most of those incredibly intense, wonderful little fungi.

Recipe: Truffled Saint-Marcellin

1 fresh black truffle, cleaned (about 1 ounce, 30g)

4 disks Saint-Marcellin cow's milk cheese, well chilled

4 slices Brioche, toasted, for serving

1.  With a vegetable peeler, peel the truffle.  Mince the truffle peelings, place them in the jar, and tighten the lid.  Reserve the peelings for another use.  With the mandoline or very sharp knife, cut the truffle into very thin slices.  The truffle should yield about 20 slices.

2.  With dental floss or very sharp knife, carefully slice one of the cheese in half at the equator, like a layer cake.  Arrange about 5 truffle slices over the bottom half of the cheese.  Replace the top half of the cheese.  Wrap it securely in plastic wrap.  Repeat for the remaining cheeses.  Refrigerate for 24 to 48 hours to perfume the cheese with the truffles.

3.  At serving time, arrange a rack in the oven about 3 inches from the heat source.  Preheat the broiler.

4.  Unwrap the cheeses and transfer them to the baking sheet.  Place the baking sheet under the broiler.  As soon as the cheese begins to melt -- about 1 minute -- remove from the oven.  With a spatula, carefully transfer the cheeses to small individual salad plates.  Serve immediately, with the toasted brioche.


Reply to Review: Truffles!!!!
That sounds AMAZING! I have never had a truffle in or on anything! But I do spend a bit of time reading other peoples descriptions of how a truffle tastes. Right now I have a wonderful taste image of what I think it will taste like, and I am looking forward to trying one. I will not just go out and buy a jar of truffle oil to try it! You never know how those little bottles have been treated. Have they been in the sun, or the heat, or the cold, or a combo of everything. Nope! Not me! I am somewhat of a purist. I want my first experience to be a true truffle experience. (sigh) This could be the year!

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