For the past couple of years, the Australian black truffles have arisen to the culinary occasion, as they share the most similarity as the Perigord black truffles from France. Cultivated in Western Australia and Tasmania, these black truffles are grown in the same ways they were grown in France for centuries, and these Australian cousins are highly regarded for their flavor and aroma, much like its French kind. Better yet, these truffles are grown in Australia, with a Southern Hemisphere's climate being opposite of that of the Northern hemisphere, meaning that at the height of its season, the Australian Black Winter Truffles would replenish the high demand of truffles even at our summery months. Is it not great news for truffle loving gourmets out there? For a taste of the dishes featuring Australian Black Winter Truffles, one should look no further to Hyatt Regency Hong Kong, Tsim Sha Tsui's Hugo's, known best for its tableside cooking and fine dining practices, as head chef Renaud Marin creates a colorful array of new dishes accentuating the marvel of Australian Black Winter Truffles.
Chef Renaud Marin comes from the South of France and has paved his culinary career starting in France. With heavy reliance on seasonal produce at the Mediterranean, Chef Marin has found great respect to produce brought by the season, as these produce runs the show in his kitchen, in ways where the ingredients themselves will shine through each dish through Chef Marin's execution to accentuate their own flavours and through uncomplicated techniques the produce is brought to the spotlight of the dish. In his new Australian Black Winter Truffle Menu, chef Marin creates an array of great dishes that focuses the diners' palate on these specialty truffles.
According to Chef Marin, a good truffle should weigh between 40 to 60 grams, with a firm and slightly moist texture. The heady aroma of the truffle loses by 10% of its weight every day. This can be helped by keeping the truffle inside a closed tub of rice to seal it from the surroundings.
To start the charm of the Australian Black Truffle, Chef Marin presents ‘Veal Carpaccio with Shaved Fresh Black Truffle' as an appetizer. Gossamer slices of pink, soft veal lines the plate and topped with a small green salad. The dish features strong earthy flavours with the sprinkle of hazelnuts, rosemary and a generous helping of shaved Australian Black Winter Truffles. The woody notes of the truffles combine with piney fragrance of the rosemary brings intrigue to taste the veal, with just the slightest hint of sweetness from blossom-honey.
Traditionally a French culinary practice, the ‘Vegetable Casserole with Pata Negra and Black Truffle' is a light course that brings out the true flavours of the Australian Black Winter Truffle. Chef Marin started the pan by rendering the fat from Pata Negra Ham, followed by the addition of a colorful mélange of vegetables. After a light braise the vegetables are tossed and presented with both fresh and crispy Pata Negra Ham and not to mention, a helping of Australian Black Winter Truffle. The vegetables yield to the bite, and the flavor of the ham transposes onto the vegetables, and the truffle adds a savory edge to this vegetable dish.
Black Truffles pairs well with ingredients that have a round, buttery flavor and texture. Such is the case with a perfect creamy scrambled eggs. For a buttery fish pairing the Australian Black Winter Truffle, one should consider the "Butter Poached Fillet of French Line Caught Sea Bass with Shaved Fresh Black Truffle". The sea bass is poached in clarified butter slowly, creating a soft, silky flesh. Upon poaching the sea bass' skin is carefully removed and replaced with round shavings of black truffle, presenting to mimic the scales of the sea bass. Served with fondant potatoes that are rich in thyme, butter and garlic, the fish the tender and soft, with good creamy texture as well.
After the fish course, consider one with meat, perhaps? The "Organic Rhug Estate Suckling Pig with Black Truffle". After deboning the whole pig, the sectioned pig will be slow cooked for 8 hours with a rich flavourful marinade of herbs. For each diner's serving, each part of the pig will be carved and served, ensuring that each diner gets to experience how the truffle matches and brings out the meaty flavor of the suckling pig even more.
The Taste of Australian Black Winter Truffle menu at Hugo's will run from now until the end of July due to a limited season for this Australian Black Diamond in the kitchen. For a taste of this seasonal gem on a la carte dishes available at Hugo's, diners can also place a request for a serving of shaved truffles on top of their favorite dishes.