So what better way is there to prepare for winter than with a nice white truffle risotto? Its characteristic intense aroma will leave all your guests amazed. And with a satisfied palate, if you know how to make the dish. Do you think you can't afford it? You are quite wrong, and here's why.

Table of contents

  • Ingredients
  • Tools to use
  • The recipe
  • It doesn't cost that much


Preparing white truffle risotto

Ingredients for 4 persons:

  • rice: 350 g
  • white truffle: 1 medium-sized truffle, approx. 25 g
  • shallot: 1
  • extra virgin olive oil: 3 tbsp
  • butter: a knob, approx. 30 g
  • broth: 1 litre
  • salt: to taste 

I didn't include any strange variations here, fancy touches or other chef stuff, so to speak. I would like you, at least for the first time, to prepare a white truffle risotto without too many frills, to make sure you bring out the unique taste of the tuber.

The tools to use

The white truffle is rare, delicate and must be treated with proper respect. Therefore, before starting to cook, it' s better to get the right tools. Not all of you have a rice cooker at home, so a high-sided frying pan or a casserole pan will do quite well. The most important thing is not to pile the risotto in one place or scatter it in a huge frying pan, like the ones used to make paella.

Oh, you also need a "pan licker", you know what that is? It's that kind of spatula with a soft (and fireproof) silicone part at one end. You need it to stir the risotto without splitting all the grains. But then again, my grandmother used to do it the traditional way and everything always tasted great, but I'm neither that skilled nor that good at teaching you how to do it. So, hooray for spatulas.

The recipe for white truffle risotto

  1. Chop the shallot like there's no tomorrow. Not because there are the usual picky eaters who don't like onion (for them shallots are the same thing), but because the shallot almost has to dissolve in the oil; the flavour has to be delicate and shouldn't clash with the truffle.
  2. Prepare the stock and leave it on the heat for as long as the rice is cooking. It must always be hot, in order not to overcook the rice, and it must not be too salty or too savoury. This sounds simple, but actually it' s not at all. Just remember: good broth, good risotto. My grandmother used to say this, I didn't make it up :)
  3. Over a low heat, slowly stir-fry the shallot and, before it browns, pour the rice into the pot.
  4. Turn up the heat for a minute or so, in this way the grain will keep cooking better (it's not really roasting, but it works).
  5. I deliberately didn't put wine, as I would have done for black truffle risotto, avoiding this time that sour note that usually goes well, but with white truffles it's a bit of a risk. So instead of deglazing with wine, pour two or three ladles of hot stock in directly.
  6. Every time the risotto runs dry (not too much), add more stock. To find out when you need to pour in more stock, swipe the spatula from one side of the pan to the other. If the risotto flows back into the holes you create, in about one second, then it is time to pour in more stock. If it does not cover these holes at all, you have just burnt the rice, which is very bad.
  7. Repeat this until one minute before the cooking time is up, then taste the rice. It must be al dente and not mushy.
  8. If you are satisfied with the cooking, turn off the heat and add butter.
  9. Let it rest for a few minutes and then pour the risotto onto the plates.
  10. And now for the magic ritual: cutting the truffle. Use a truffle slicer or alternatively a potato peeler and slice the precious tuber onto the risotto while it is still hot. Can you smell its unique aroma? There you go, I've made myself hungry!

Tartufo bianco

White truffle risotto doesn't cost that much

Yes, the white truffle is the most expensive truffle of all, its prices usually averaging €2,100/2,500 per kg, a truly mind-boggling amount. However, a high quality white truffle, if chosen properly and handled with care, has such an intense aroma and strong flavour that just a few grams are enough to add that special gusto to an entire course.

Let me give you an example: a white truffle risotto for 4 people (done well) needs about 5 g of white truffle per person, making a total of 20 g of white truffle for the entire dish. Some recipes even recommend 15 g per person, but if the truffle is of quality, 5-6 g are more than enough. Considering that white truffles currently cost around €2,100/kg for truffle sizes ranging between 20 and 49 g. This means that a truffle of about 25 g will do very well and could cost you around €50.

A lot, but not a huge amount, right? I'd say that with about 15 € per person you can organise a king's dinner for four, complete with wine and a good risotto. :)

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