It’s not very often you get to do a cooking class with a Michelin 2 Star Chef, especially one who has flown half way around the world and who specializes in Italian cuisine. But with the World Italian Cuisine Summit last month, and over a dozen Italian Michelin starred chefs flown in to cook around the theme of white truffles, there were some pretty cool events going on in Hong Kong, including my cooking class with Michelin 2 Star Chef Marco Sacco and famed truffle hunter Franco Canta.
For some reason, I happened to be the only young guy in my 20s at the event. Actually, the only guy I think. Otherwise, it was me with about 2 dozen middle aged “housewives” (also known in HK as “taitais”) fawning over the smell of white truffles and Chef Sacco’s and truffle hunter Canta’s Italian charm. The three courses were: (1) beef and tuna tartar with white truffles, (2) Carnaroli risotto with beetroot, chilly oil and white truffles, and (3) a liquid tiramisu with white truffles.
I admit, I’m a sucker for white truffles. The aroma turns me into something along the lines of a crazed 13 yr old girl at a Justin Bieber concert. And seeing the size of the massive white truffles supplied by suave Italian truffle hunter Franco Canta, and all the women around me going crazy as he shaved his big white truffles over their risotto, just made me think, hum, I’m in the wrong profession…
I won’t bore you with the recipes for Chef Sacco’s dishes since I haven’t tried cooking them myself, nor do I think I will anytime soon (I haven’t cooked a meal for myself in months). However, for me the experience was the celebration of the highly seasonal white truffle, and having a great Italian Michelin 2 Star chef cook a special meal designed around that theme.
My only wish would have been that we had even more white truffles on each dish. Truffles are extremely fragrant, and while shaving a truffle for a guest makes for good show, truffle shavings in small quantity are too delicate and subtle to really appreciate on the palate. But hey, with a market value per gram worth more than cocaine, and my ridiculously discounted first white truffle purchase ever, I’m a happy camper. Great event!