Smashing Truffles

Christopher Baker

Pounding a black truffle to a paste in a mortar with a bit of oil, butter, or cream yields a versatile paste—a kind of upscale tapenade—that can dispense truffle character quickly and potently into a wide variety of foods. As a refinement, rub both mortar and pestle with a halved clove of garlic, then pound an ounce of truffles with a pinch of salt and moisten with a bit of cognac and madeira. Drizzle in 2 cups of canola or other mild oil, then let the mixture steep for several days. Shake well, then add to soups, root vegetables, rice, or pasta.