A Truffle Hunter’s Fricassee
I probably should have called today’s dish ‘A Disgruntled Truffle Hunters Fricassee’, especially as there are no actual truffles in the recipe. Many truffle hunters use pigs to help sniff out their quarry but, as you can imagine, not all hunts will be successful and, occasionally, one must make do with truffle oil and mushrooms, as I do here. As you will see, pork is the main feature in this particular fricassee, and so perhaps this dish is made in the spirit of a truffle hunter who came home empty handed one day and then took it out on his poor, hapless pig …
This is the source of my pork for this recipe. It is a small pork loin roast that was going on special and worth snapping up at the price. I only really need about half of this meat for my fricassee but the other half will do very nicely sliced into thin ‘scaloppini’ sections for later…
- 3/4lb Pork, cut into small cubes;
- 3 cups sliced fresh Mushrooms;
- ¼ cup minced Onion;
- 1 tsp. Garlic paste;
- 4 Tbsp. Butter;
- 1 Tbsp. Lemon juice;
- 5 Tbsp. Truffle Oil;
- 1 Tbsp. Flour;
- ½ cup Dry White Wine;
- 1 cup Chicken Stock;
- ¼ cup Dry Sherry;
- ½ cup Heavy Cream;
- Salt and freshly ground Black Pepper;
I am using Crimini Mushrooms here, but you can use pretty much any sort you like. The first step is to sweat them in just a little oil in covered pan until they throw off their liquid.
Once the water exuded from the mushrooms has evaporated, add two tablespoons of your butter to the pan and saute the slices, adding the lemon juice and sprinkling liberally with pepper. Continue stirring until the slices are golden and the thinner sections are even starting to get crispy in a few isolated spots. When done, remove to a bowl and keep warm.
Add a little more oil to the pan and briefly cook the pork pieces until golden on all sides. Be careful you do not add the meat to the pan all at once, or too quickly, as you don’t want to lower the temperature too much and cause the meat to steam cook, rather than fry. Season with a little salt and remove the cooked pieces to a separate bowl for now.
Add the onions to the freshly vacated saute pan, followed by the garlic and then the white wine. Cook vigorously, deglazing the pan as you go, and reduce the liquid to just a few tablespoons of syrupy residue.
Add back the mushroom slices and the truffle oil, then stir in the flour, making sure it coats the solids and doesn’t clump. Cook for a moment or two to remove the raw taste of the flour.
Now, add the stock and sherry. Allow this to bubble vigorously and reduce until the liquid is thickened and the volume is reduced by about half.
Finally add back the meat, followed by the cream and the remaining butter. At this point, you should reduce the heat and, most importantly, ensure the fricassee does not boil. Allow the dish to simmer gently until the meat is tender and the sauce has reduced to the desired consistency.
You could serve this over egg noodles (like a ‘Stroganoff’), or, alternatively, in bowls with buttered bread and a side salad. I like mine with mashed potatoes to absorb the sauce J