HOME > Chowhound > General Topics >

Discussion

TRUFFLE OIL WHY USE IT???

Here is a quote from Jean Georges Vongericten in an interview that he had with a Wall Street Journal Reporter,22 January 2011.
"The most overrated ingredient is truffle oil. It's like gasoline. I never use it in my restaurants. It's heavy, and it repeats on me."

I sometimes have a dish at my fav local place that uses truffle oil on it; but I have to say it is not a key ingredient, for my tastes.

  1. Click to Upload a photo (10 MB limit)
Delete
  1. It's just an ingredient -like anything else. You might like the flavor alone or combined with other flavors. If you don't like either- then I wouldn't suggest you use it.

    I like it on scrambled eggs, in a light and quick chicken and pasta supper, on crostini's with various toppings plus garlic and arugula, a little on pan potato's and onion along side a steak is nice. Many times I use a little when I don't have mushrooms but need a little "taste of earth" in something.
    Treat it like good fish sauce- if you use too much it will make your whole dish taste like rotten fish, if you use too much truffle oil- your whole dish will taste like gasoline. Cooking 101..you don't drench your food with it.

    2 Replies
    1. re: sedimental

      You said it. The other key is to find **actual** truffle oil. Made only with truffles and oil. Most of the stuff out there has chemical "enhancements" that make it smell like truffles, but also make it taste less than pleasant. I I found daRosario Organic White Truffle oil and the difference between it and the first stuff I bought was night and day.

      Sure, it helps if you **like** the whole truffle smell-taste thing...but if you do...read your labels, folks! The pure stuff is so much better. Sedimental said it best when he said to use it sparingly/caring-ly...Drizzled on a fried egg maybe? Or roasted asparagus? **Hungry**

      1. re: mzrb25

        Am with you. There is no comparison between the authentic stuff and the imposter. None. I personally love it and I love fresh truffles even more.

    2. I'm not a fan either. The smell alone is unpleasant. I actually have about six bottles gathering dust in my pantry right now.

      1. Here's an old thread on the subject. I threw mine out after this :)

        http://chowhound.chow.com/topics/648448

        6 Replies
        1. re: c oliver

          Why throw it out? Because it's fake?

          1. re: sedimental

            Because I thought it tasted nasty.

            1. re: c oliver

              c oliver.....You reacted in the same manner as Jean Georges Vongericten; makes me like the idea of restraurant dishes laced with truffle oil even less!

              1. re: ospreycove

                I think I just needed some validation :)

                1. re: c oliver

                  Sounds like the way I feel about anchovies!
                  It is one of those things that you have to use very sparingly. I don't think I have ever had it in a restaurant dish, but if you really don't like- there is no coverin' it up!

                  1. re: c oliver

                    wow, glad to hear this. i just tasted truffle oil for the first time due to the pestering of my co-workers. i'd never tried it before because it smells horrible to me. and lo and behold, i was convinced they had added paint thinner to their garlic/parm/truffle oil french fries from the "gourmet" restaurant we'd ordered lunch from. i literally thought they were playing a joke on me as i rinsed my mouth out in the bathroom for ten minutes.

                    good riddance...

          2. After having truffle oil a few times, I was lucky enough to have real truffles shaved over a plate of pasta in Florence. Though I still found the flavor a little overwhelming, it was light years better than the oil--in fact, a different flavor altogether. Since then, I've avoided dishes topped with truffle oil since to me it simply drowns out the other flavors--and not in a good way.

            2 Replies
            1. re: escondido123

              Agree. Totally different. I bought a tiny little, Oregon truffle. The vendor's recommendation was that I use half sliced over scrambled eggs. Just heavenly.

              1. re: c oliver

                I guess the reason its used is because if its IN something(not just drizzled on something), you get a bit of that white truffle flavor, and its actually affordable, unlike purchasing white truffles. Very few restaurants can foot the bill for fresh white truffles.

            2. My SO and I just had this conversation yesterday-I like truffle oil, but only very occasionally, and only on certain things (specialty pastas, white pizzas, fries with parmesion) while he douses EVERYTHING in it-bagel and cream cheese, turkey sandwich. I actually had to move away from him while we were eating yesterday-it was way too powerful for my senses at that time. Like someone eating tuna salad with pepperochinis in bed or something.