François de MélogueMain CourseProvencal RecipesTaste: Food & Drink

Truffle Hunt Pasta Spaghetti with Eggs

It’s no secret that Provence is very popular, bordering on too much so at the height of the summer season. The Centre National d’Information Routiere (CNIR) publishes an annual outlook of their predictions for the worst traffic days on the autoroutes in France. Not surprisingly THE worst days of the year generally fall during the summer holidays around July 14th, the first weekend in August and around the 15th of the month. When it feels like everyone is on the roads, at a crowded beach and vying for a parking spot at the grocery store, it’s hard to believe in Santa that there are any secrets in Provence. Until a secret truffle hunt in the Luberon.

Inspiration for Truffle Hunt Pasta! This recipe for a Spaghetti with Eggs is easy to make. And, the ingredients do not overpower the flavour of the truffles.

Spagetti Truffle Hunt Pasta
Spaghetti with Eggs and Truffles (Lu Spaghetti a L'Ou)
Truffles are a wonderful addition to just about everything. Their earthy flavors marry perfectly with rich, creamy dishes. The pasta recipe comes from disgraced former Nice mayor Jacques Medecin. I may have forgotten the scandals that embroiled his career, but I do remember his wonderful cookbook celebrating Nicoise cuisine. I modified the recipe slightly from Jacques Medecin's original.
Spagetti Truffle Hunt Pasta
Spaghetti with Eggs and Truffles (Lu Spaghetti a L'Ou)
Truffles are a wonderful addition to just about everything. Their earthy flavors marry perfectly with rich, creamy dishes. The pasta recipe comes from disgraced former Nice mayor Jacques Medecin. I may have forgotten the scandals that embroiled his career, but I do remember his wonderful cookbook celebrating Nicoise cuisine. I modified the recipe slightly from Jacques Medecin's original.
Servings Prep Time
4People 10minutes
Cook Time
15minutes
Servings Prep Time
4People 10minutes
Cook Time
15minutes
Ingredients
Instructions
  1. Cook pasta al dente.
  2. While pasta is cooking, beat the eggs, egg yolks, and half of the Parmesan together.
  3. Heat the olive oil and brown the diced pancetta. When brown, add the piment d'ville and all the cream.
  4. Toss the pasta with the room temperature butter, egg mixture, and pancetta mixture.
  5. Shave the truffles over the pasta, sprinkle with remaining Parmesan, and serve immediately
Recipe Notes

*Although this pasta recipe was made with white truffles from Alba, Italy it will work perfectly for both summer truffles and winter truffles.

More on Truffles in Provence + Recipes

Elusive Truffles Hunting for Black Gold in Provence. The dogs dart in and out of the trees, as the truffle hunter (caveur or rabassier) scans their movements watching to see where, and if, they start to dig. A single word, the command to stand down, the dog steps aside allowing his master to take over. Gently loosening the dirt, the farmer extracts what appeared to be a lump of coal, a black truffle the size of a toddler’s fist.

January is black truffle season in Uzès and the annual Fête de la Truffe. Each year a mountain of sand arrives in the Place aux Herbes, planted here and there with oak and hazel branches to create la campagne (countryside) feel. Black truffles are hidden in this scene in the dark of the night (surveyed until daylight hours by security guards). Then, during the day, dog- and pig owners are invited to let their animals search for them. The scent of truffles pervades the town and all the Uzes restaurants will be serving truffled dishes.

It is more common to see summer truffles in the markets than in the past. However, this summer tuber may be related to the “Black Diamond,” but the taste is certainly not as distinctive. There is also a significant price differential between the summer and winter varieties. In peak months, the black truffle will command about 10 times the price (per kilo) compared to summer truffles. Discover the truffle markets in Provence.

The key to cooking with truffles is the KISS (Keep it Simple Stupid) theory. Make dishes that will not detract from the earthy flavour of the truffles. Here are a few of our favourites:

Chicken and Truffles

Crushed Black Truffle Mash Potatoes

Quick Mushroom Truffle Omelette for Two

How to Make Truffle Butter

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Chef François de Mélogue

Chef François de Mélogue

François de Mélogue grew up in a very French household in Chicago. His earliest attempts at cookery began with the filleting of his sister’s goldfish at age two and a braised rabbit dish made with his pet rabbits by age seven. He eventually stopped cooking his pets and went to the highly esteemed New England Culinary Institute where he graduated top of his class in 1985.

Chef François de Mélogue has over 30 years of cross-cultural culinary experience and brings an impressive culinary history and a unique Mediterranean cooking style. After graduating top of his class from the notable New England Culinary Institute, Chef François began his career in a number of highly acclaimed kitchens across the country, including Chef Louis Szathmary’s restaurant The Bakery in Chicago, Old Drovers Inn, a Relais and Chateaux property in New York and Joel Robuchon Gastronomie restaurant in Paris, before opening award-winning restaurant Pili Pili in his hometown of Chicago, rated in the Top Ten new restaurants in the World by Food and Wine magazine in 2003.

While staging with Robuchon, Chef François began to shape his personal culinary philosophy of “Cuisine Actuelle,” which showcases the natural flavor in the ingredients used to create his dishes. In line with his belief that food should be prepared without unnecessary distractions or alterations, François creates honest, healthy and delicious cuisine that is approachable and always delightful. Chef François specializes in simply prepared Southern French-inspired cuisine enhanced by his appreciation and knowledge of fine wine, craft beer, charcuterie and cheese. He is a fervent student and strong advocate of regional French cuisines, specifically the rustic cuisines of Lyon and Provence. With wife Lisa, they conduct personalized, insider gastronomic tours of Burgundy/Lyon, Provence and the Pacific Northwest.

Chef François resides in Vancouver, Washington with his wife Lisa and seven-year-old son Beaumont, who has proclaimed himself the family saucier. He has written his first cookbook about Provence, entitled "Cuisine of the Sun: A Ray of Sunshine on Your Plate", and works for Foods in Season, America’s foremost foraging company specializing in hyper-seasonal, wild foraged and fished foods from the Pacific Northwest.

Follow his blog Pistou and Pastis it's filled with delicious recipes and beautiful photos.

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