Worth every guilty ounce of truffle cream sauce

Cutting the fat with Dry Rielsing


Eric Guido returns this week with a stunning Fettucini in Truffled Cream Sauce recipe. Using the the theory of contrasting flavors Eric has paired this dish with a set of dry rieslings. In the wine and food pairing world there are two fundamental concepts that govern pairing decisons. One can choose to either contrast, or to compliment, the flavors and textures of a dish.

In this case the rich creaminess of the sauce is contrasted against the brilliant mineral, and acid rich flavors of the wines. Other wines that would be worth exploring for this sort of dish, rich, creamy and laced with prosciutto, would include Pinot Bianco from the Alto Adige, Fiano di Avellino from Campania, dry Riesling from Australia or even a fine aged dry Chenin Blanc from the Loire Valley.

What to expect: Riesling

Riesling is a chameleon of a grape, able to produce world class wines that range from bone dry to unctuously sweet. Germany is most closely associated with Riesling, where all styles are made, and the range of flavors runs the gamut from steely and crisp with crunchy, mineral driven flavors to fresh lime, apple, and peach notes and beyond to the rich honied, candied fruit tones of the great dessert wines.

Worth every guilty ounce of truffle cream sauce

Autumn is truly a great season for food and wine lovers.  As the temperatures drop and the leaves begin to fall, we find ourselves craving the rich and hearty foods and wines that truly make life worth living.  Maybe it’s a creamy spiced squash bisque or a rich succulent braise that triggers those happy thoughts of good times and good friends.  For me it’s the foods of Northern Italy that always fit the bill.  One of my favorites is a pasta dish I mastered while working as a chef at T.H.O.R.: Fettuccine in truffle cream sauce.

Fettuccine in Truffle Cream Sauce

Not a dish you could eat every day or even every week but, when the cards are down and inhibitions are lifted, this is a plate that is sure to please with its bold flavors beautifully intertwined in an elegant, decedent, yet simply prepared sauce.  The woodsy, smoky and slightly salty flavors of the prosciutto combined with the fresh, sweet vegetal flavors of the peas, which balanced by the creamy sauce, wafts intoxicating aromas of truffles into the air.  The best part about this recipe is that the majority of the work is in the preparation, meaning you can prep your ingredients before your guests arrive, entertain them with a bubbly, and then return to the kitchen to finish the dish in literally 10 to 15 minutes.

So what would you pair with such a dish?  I used this opportunity to experiment with Riesling, more specifically dry (trocken) Riesling from Germany, and I’m sure glad I did.  My theory was that the same lively acidity Riesling is known for would cut through the rich creaminess and intense flavors of the sauce, which it did in spades.  Also, Riesling is known for aromas and flavors different from most white wines, all of which added new dimensions to the truffle cream sauce.  For a dish such as this you would want to find a dry Riesling for its brisk acidity and citrus, mineral qualities.  Riesling is also known for being a wine that truly reflects the place in which it is grown.  This fact was truly apparent in the two wines I selected, as one was a single vineyard selection and the other a blend. 

2006 Weingut Paulinshof Kestener Paulinshofberg Riesling Auslese Trocken

The single vineyard 2006 Weingut Paulinshof Kestener Paulinshofberg Riesling Auslese Trocken sliced through the truffle cream sauce like a hot knife and added new dimensions to the sauce with it’s flavors of sour apple, orange zest, and hazelnut, leading to a sweet mid-palate with tongue curling acidity.  On the nose, it showed lime and melon, which managed to hold its own against the cream sauce’s heady aromas of truffle.  As you dig deeper the fruit is backed by the smell of chestnut, slate stone, and almond skins, which provide wonderful details and complexities.  This was everyone’s favorite of the night but, while not necessarily expensive, cost almost twice as much as the other wine.

2007 Peter Stolleis Haardter Herzog Riesling Kabinett Trocken
The 2007 Peter Stolleis Haardter Herzog Riesling Kabinett Trocken was a light yellow straw in color with fresh aromas of peach nectar, lemon, and a bit of butter cookie.  The palate showed lemon rind and sweet pear but was all focused on the first impression with very little mid-palate performance.  The acidity was fresh and focused which did its job against the truffle cream sauce and followed through to a sour citrus finish.  Not a wine to think on but made for a wonderful simple sipper that paired well with the dinner and could have scored much higher in everyone’s book if it wasn’t evaluated against such stiff competition as the other wine.

In the end, both Rieslings held their own and complimented the dinner quite well.  However, if it was up to me to make this again I would go for the 2006 Weingut Paulinshof simply because of its multiple levels of flavor and rich textures which truly complimented the decadence of the truffle cream sauce.  So next time you find yourself craving the finer things in life without spending hours in the kitchen, I invite you to try this recipe and pair it with a dry Riesling.  I think you’ll find it’s worth every guilty ounce of truffle cream sauce.

Click here to download a printable PDF of this recipe.

Fettuccine in Truffle Cream Sauce

This recipe is all about planning and timing.  When working in fine dining, every plate is prepared separately in its own pan, no matter if the entire table orders the same thing.  However, at home, this would be nearly impossible, as you’d find yourself running out of burners very quickly.  I have adjusted my recipe, which was initially intended for a single plate for a party of four.

When it comes to the truffles, look for white truffles.  If you have the funds to actually buy truffles for shaving over this dish then that’s great.  However, if you’d like to keep the cost of your meal outside of the stratospheric cost range, you can easily use truffle oil.  Be careful, though, when purchasing truffle oil by looking for a brand that has actual truffle in the oil, and stay away from anything that has ingredients that read “truffle flavoring.”  I use white truffle oil from Wild Forest Products.

Lastly, a note on the prosciutto.  When you go to your butcher, ask for them to slice the prosciutto thick, about 1/8 of an inch.  At that size you will likely need about two slices for this recipe.  This will speed up your preparation.  Trim the fat and cut the prosciutto into a small dice.

  • 1 lb bag of fettuccine (timing in recipe is for dry pasta)
  • ¾ cup Prosciutto di Parma (small Dice)
  • 1 cup peas (frozen is fine but go for a good quality brand)
  • 1 shallot (fine dice)
  • 3/4 cup white wine (if possible, use the same wine you are pairing)
  • 1 cup vegetable stock
  • 1 quart whipping cream (at room temperature)
  • 1 cup Parmigiano Reggiano (grated)
  • 4 tbls butter (cubed)
  • truffle oil (see recipe instructions for use)
  • salt and pepper (to taste)
  • fresh parsley (minced)
  • 1 tbls. canola oil.


  1. Start a pot of salted boiling water.  This is not for the pasta; it’s for the peas.  Also have a bowl half filled with ice water to create an ice bath.  Place the peas into the boiling water and let them par-cook for 4 – 5 minutes until they turn a vibrant green.  Immediately strain them and throw the peas into the ice bath.  Strain them again and set them aside, covered, in your refrigerator.
  2. Heat sauté pan over medium heat and add about a tablespoon of canola oil.  Carefully use a paper towel to coat the pan with the oil.  Add the small dice of Prosciutto di Parma to the pan and cook off.  You’re looking for a toasted appearance on each side.  While the prosciutto is cooking, cover a plate with a paper towel (think about how you cook off bacon for Sunday breakfast.)  Once the prosciutto is toasted on each side, take off the heat and move onto the plated paper towel.  Set the prosciutto aside.
  3. Have all of your ingredients ready and close to the oven.  Place your serving plates in an oven at the lowest temperature (this will keep the sauce from breaking when you plate the food.) Bring a pot of well-salted water to a boil for the pasta.    
  4. Place a large saucier or sauté pan over medium low heat.  Melt 2 tbls of the butter in the pan and add the shallots and season with salt.  Allow the shallots to sweat in the butter until they are translucent.
  5. Turn the heat up to medium and allow the pan’s temperature to come up, but be careful to not let the shallot take on any color.  Add the white wine and allow it to reduce.  As the white wine is reducing in the pan, add the pasta to the boiling pasta water and set your timer to 2 minutes short of the recommended cooking time. (You are now at the point of no return.)
  6. Add the stock and whipping cream to the saucepan and raise the heat to a medium high.  Stay close to the pan and continue to mix regularly to make sure that the cream is not burning on the bottom of the pan.  The idea is to reduce the cream by 1/3.
  7. After about four minutes, add the pre-cooked prosciutto to the pan and continue to reduce.  If reduction appears to be going too quickly then turn down the burner to medium low.   Taste and season lightly with salt.
  8. The timer for your pasta should go off about the same time as the cream has reduced to desired level.
  9. Pour the pasta into a colander and quickly rinse out the pot with hot water.  Place pan back on the stovetop over a low flame.
  10. Drizzle pasta with truffle oil and toss.  Then add the pasta back to the pot and pour the reduced cream sauce over the pasta along with the par-cooked peas and stir to combine.
  11. Turn off the burner and add half of the grated Parmigiano Reggiano and last two tbls of butter.  Stir to bring the sauce together and taste.  Season with salt and pepper if necessary.
  12. Remove the plates from the oven and portion the pasta out with tongs.  (Don’t worry about the sauce at this time because it will collect at the bottom of the pan.)  Once you have portioned out all of the pasta, use a ladle to sauce each plate from what is left at the bottom of the pot, making sure to distribute the peas and pieces of prosciutto evenly.
  13. Drizzle each plate with truffle oil.  (Be careful not to overdo it.  Truffle and truffle oil can go from good to overwhelming very quickly.) Then sprinkle with the remaining parmigiano and then with parsley.
  14. With a warm paper towel, clean the rim of the plates and serve.

Learn more about German wine and Food Pairing: On Snooth

Learn to Decipher German Wine Labels
German wines, whose labels offer you all the detailed information you need to make a great selection, can be very intimidating. It’s time to make it a bit easier. In case you missed our recent article, it helps one learn how to tell dry wines from sweet and find a Riesling to match your needs.

Fettuccine in Truffle Cream Sauce

Autumn is truly a great season for food and wine lovers.  As the temperatures drop and the leaves begin to fall, we find ourselves craving the rich and hearty foods and wines that truly make life worth living. For me it’s the foods of Northern Italy that always fit the bill.

Mentioned in this article


  • Apparently the cook drank ALL the wine BEFORE he wrote out this recipe....It starts out straining something (?) twice and setting it aside....when you are reducing the wine, is that all that you are reducing?...then, "the idea is to reduce the cream by 1/3" ...where does the vegetable stock go in....you need to be more clear....by "cream", do you mean mix all the liquids together, and this is further referred to as "cream"? The ingredients sound wonderful and I don't want to ruin/waste them by putting this together wrong.....please revise and list what goes in which pan....

    Oct 23, 2009 at 12:48 PM

  • I agree with OP - this recipe is written poorly and seems to start way past the first step. WTF?

    Oct 23, 2009 at 1:36 PM

  • Snooth User: Naresh
    96034 24

    besides, one quart of cream seems like an awful lot for four servings of pasta. I'm thinking that he wants you to mix the stock, the cream and the peas and cook that until the cream reduces by a third? Saute the shallots in half the butter, deglaze with the wine and add the cream mixture. Then reduce it some more, add the prosciutto and simmer? Then, when the pasta is ready, strain it, toss it with some truffle oil, add back into the pan with the sauce, bring it up to med heat, add the parmesan and other ingredients and cook until the pasta is al dente, adding some of the cooking water if it's too dry. Then you can serve it like he says.

    These are just my thoughts, so with that warning, I can say, "That's how I would do it."

    Oct 23, 2009 at 1:58 PM

  • If you go to the pdf version, it's all there.

    Oct 23, 2009 at 2:16 PM

  • Snooth User: cjinca
    177438 31

    Hmmm I think the peas aren't cooked that much, given par-cooked peas are added back near the end. And i really can't see cooking the prosciutto in liquid. I would do the prosciutto is first in the pan, then set aside, then the shallots in the butter, deglaze with wine, add cream and stock and reduce. In my experience that much liquid would take longer than the time to cook the pasta... I think that's a problem of doing 4 servings in one pan so I'd start it ahead of the pasta and slow it down if necessary, just to be safe. Yes, a LOT of cream - i would only do as an appetizer, too heavy as the meal.

    The instructions definitely need help!

    Oct 23, 2009 at 2:33 PM

  • Snooth User: Nimasu
    268844 4

    Where do you find the pdf version? This version is definitely confusing. C'mon SNOOTH, you need better proof readers (or one's who haven't been sippin' too much of da vino!)

    Oct 23, 2009 at 4:44 PM

  • I'm glad to see that I wasn't the only one confused over the recipe! My wife and I were going to make it this evening but I think we'll wait for clarification.

    Oct 23, 2009 at 4:47 PM

  • Snooth User: Gregory Dal Piaz
    Hand of Snooth Voice of Snooth
    89065 225,234

    Sorry everyone. The instructions did indeed get truncated while being posted to the site.

    All should be in order now.

    Oct 23, 2009 at 5:04 PM

  • Snooth User: Eric Guido
    Hand of Snooth Voice of Snooth
    92549 181,829


    I must say that, I don't see anything wrong with the recipe. If it's too rich for your tastes then I'd advise not eating foods like this when you dine out because this is literally a recipe converted from something I've made 100s of times. If anything the one thing that surprised me the most when working in fine dining, it's just how much butter (and salt) goes into the food.

    You can cut back on the cream but you'll have less sauce for the pasta. If you don't mind that then you'll be fine.

    The technique may be odd to you if you don't precook your items the way I advised.

    As for the peas. Get some frozen peas and follow these instructions. I'd be very surprised if they weren't perfectly cooked. If you use fresh peas than you would have to change the recipe.

    If anyone wants some clarification then please let me know. I'll be happy to help.

    Oct 23, 2009 at 6:54 PM

  • Snooth User: Philip James
    Founding Member Hand of Snooth Voice of Snooth
    1 12,550

    There was an error in the way the list of ingredients and the preparations were pasted into the article, its been fixed and should read more clearly now.

    Oct 23, 2009 at 7:09 PM

  • Wow, guys..I think you owe Eric an apology! Come on!...he's a fantastic writer & chef.
    I can assure you this meal was absolutely incredible because I was fortunate enough to have enjoyed it.
    He's right- when you go out to a restaurant and eat a meal like this it fantastic! The cream & seasoning ='s yummy stuff. It is rich alright, but hopefully one doesn't indulge in this type of food daily.

    Oct 23, 2009 at 7:37 PM

  • Snooth User: Germaine
    259660 6

    I have to say, I was a guest of Eric's and disagree with all the above nit-picking. It do agree that one cannot indulge in this type of food daily. It was an absolutely decadent dish, surprisingly the cream sauce even though rich, was light was not heavy at all . I happened to loved the way the peas added a nice texture. Peas were not over cooked (as we all know it is very easy to do) were perfect against the smooth texture Fettuccine.
    There were many dimensions of flavors but none over powering the other. I have had many the pasta dish at well known restaurants and left feeling either, too heavy or I could have just as well stayed home to make the same boring pasta dish. Eric's dish was truly delightful, and it is a shame that it is being ripped apart.
    The wine pairing was perfect as well, the light Rieslings were perfect complements, and rounded the dish nicely.

    Oct 23, 2009 at 9:30 PM

  • Snooth User: Kane429
    284367 4

    I must say that this article made my mouth water as I read it. If you feel that the recipe is too heavy, then you're in the wrong league quite honestly. Bravo to another masterpiece here!

    --Alan Kaplan

    Oct 23, 2009 at 11:02 PM

  • This recipe sounds fantastic. And pretty clear to me. I'm going to try it tomorrow. I find some of these comments very harsh, and that is really not necessary. I've tried many of Eric's recipes. They always come out perfect. Bravo for yet another delicious one.

    Oct 23, 2009 at 11:23 PM

  • Snooth User: dmcker
    Hand of Snooth
    125836 8,051

    I'm just seeing this now, and the recipe looks orthodoxly delicious. I assume any problems in the recipe presentation were edited out, since everything looks just fine now. I can almost smell white truffle shavings as I read... ;-)

    Eric, what other wines might you be tempted to try with this dish? I like Greg's other suggestions, but what would you be tempted to try from France or California?

    Oct 23, 2009 at 11:52 PM

  • Snooth User: Lindy Hemsley
    Hand of Snooth
    167061 733

    Thank you so much Eric. One of our favourite dishes in the world is Armando Percuoco's egg truffle fettucine at Buon Ricordo in Sydney. I have never known what to drink with it though. Riesling is it next time. Your dish will be dinner tonight. I can't wait to try it, sounds wonderful.

    Oct 24, 2009 at 12:03 AM

  • Snooth User: joss
    Hand of Snooth
    73889 988

    a little surprised by some of the critical comments early on, but i guess i read the article AFTER it had been posted properly (a truncated recipe would probably indeed be confusing). regardless, one of my best friends is a world class chef who's trained w/ some very big names. i've cooked w/ him and learned from him, and i can tell you that in any decadent entree of this sort in a fine dining establishment, this recipe's rich ingredients/quantities are pretty normal.

    it clearly states at the beginning of this article that this is not an everyday dish, not even a weekly dish. it is an occasional indulgence, when the evening or menu calls for a no-holds barred caloric gastro-fest. it should be with that in mind when reading and/or trying this recipe.

    i myself, just a few weekends ago, cooked a special dinner for some close friends from out of town. this was our caloric intake:

    starter: beef carpaccio on arugula bed w/ dijon lemon dressing and shaved parmesan, paired w/ Iron Horse Blanc de Blancs (Green Valley)

    main: filet mignon topped w/ herb-butter sauteed porcini mushrooms, in a roqueforte reduction sauce, alongside a simple endive and minced lobster salad dressed w/ a subtle citrus vinaigrette and shaved truffles, paired w/ G. Cesari Amarone Della Valpolicella Il Bosco

    apres: a small cheese flight w/ some of cowgirl creamery's award winners, along w/ Veuve Clicquot Ponsardin Champagne Brut Vintage Rare

    dessert: warm chocolate torte w/ pistachio ice cream and crushed frozen mint

    i did everything in european portions, but still, i thought i was going to explode. still, it would've been a happy demise...

    i forgot my point during this happy memory... :)ohyes, the point is that sometimes, on special occasion, utter disregard for the healthiness of your luxurious menu is the healthiest thing to do for your life... just my opinion.

    i look forward to trying eric's recipe someday in the not too distant future...

    and i thank him for sharing it w/ us.

    Oct 24, 2009 at 1:43 AM

  • Snooth User: Deanie
    261173 6

    Wow! Mistake or not some of the comments were way too harsh. I tried this recipe it was great! as are so many of Eric's other dishes. I love creamy dishs and this one fit the bill wonderfully, not to mention adding his wine selection to the meal. Keep up the good work Eric!!!

    Thanks for all of the great meal ideas!

    Oct 24, 2009 at 1:54 PM

  • Snooth User: Eric Guido
    Hand of Snooth Voice of Snooth
    92549 181,829

    Hey guys, I know there are a couple of questions to address here but I'm working a huge event today. I'll be responding to any inquiries shortly. Sorry for the delay.

    Oct 24, 2009 at 3:02 PM

  • Perhaps to clarify some of the first comments, including my own. The recipe as described initially sounded fabulously delicious - no problem with the description or the pairing... but as WRITTEN, the first version of the recipe was truncated (Snooth's term) and as a result, those of us who saw it before it was corrected were totally confused with a recipe that initially began "... drain twice... etc etc." without saying WHAT was drained twice.

    My intention was not to deride the chef... it was merely a comment that NO ONE could follow it as originally posted.

    Oct 24, 2009 at 9:57 PM

  • Snooth User: Gregory Dal Piaz
    Hand of Snooth Voice of Snooth
    89065 225,234

    Looks like th yeah-sayers have taken the upper hand from the nay-sayers on this one. Again, through no fault of Erics there was an issue with the recipe as written. Now it's there and it looks to be a very fine recipe indeed.

    I worked in the kitchen professionally for 2 decades. Restaurant food can be so good, so deep and complex precisely because we are able to cram more in a dish than you typically would at home.

    More fat, more salt, more flavor with intense reductions. No one is suggesting you include this in your weekly lunch rotation!

    Oct 25, 2009 at 11:20 AM

  • Snooth User: Saraswati
    286246 1

    I find myself VERY blessed to have sampled this amazing Fettuccini in Trufflee Cream Sauce... I still find myself salivating at the memory. Bravo to th chef!

    Oct 26, 2009 at 11:37 AM

  • Snooth User: msalas88
    207551 1

    Made this last night.. Absolutely decadent.. I'm trilled to have found such an amazing recipe.

    Oct 26, 2009 at 3:00 PM

  • Snooth User: Eric Guido
    Hand of Snooth Voice of Snooth
    92549 181,829

    A big thanks to everyone. It's too bad that the first five comments are so negative and not really about my work as much as they are about a problem with the way it was posted.

    I'm really happy to hear that a few people tried this recipe and enjoyed it so much. Can you imagine how hard it was to make this an average of 10 - 15 times a night and have to taste the sauce every single time to make sure it was seasoned right... It was sooo hard. : >)

    dmcker - you know I'm not the best reference when it coms to French wine (I'm still studying). But I can tell you what I think would be great with this. How about a Petite Arvine from the Vallé d'Aoste region of North Western Italy. As for Cali, one of those highly acidic sauvignon blanc that they've been receiving such high praise for. I remember enjoying one from Larkmead that showed lots of citrus and minerally flavors and aromas that would rock next to this plate.

    heartsleeve - I understand completely and it means a lot to me that you made a comment to explain that you see what happened here. The sad part for me is that everyone that visits this article is now faced with a barrage of negative feedback. What can you do though? I would hope that after reading the article that the reader would only be confused by the feedback and then relieved when they saw the positive notes that followed. Again, I appreciate you writing back.

    Lindy-Hemsley - Thanks, and now I know where to eat if I'm ever in Sydney. Your comments are appreciated and I think you'll love the pairing.

    joss - Loved your comments and really enjoyed reading about that meal. That's the way I like to eat, small portions of rich foods spread out over a large portion of time.

    And to those of you that have had this either at the restaurant, an event or in my home, thank you so much for coming to my rescue. I had fun sharing this story and one of the comments in particular with another Chef from THOR and we laughed quite a bit. It's amazing how fast the heavy cream goes when a cream sauce is on the menu. I will say that if anything this might feed 6, assuming that none of those six are hungry men. I know a quite few people that might ask for seconds.

    Thanks everyone.

    Oct 26, 2009 at 11:32 PM

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