Sunday, December 11, 2016

Kindred: Tortellini with White Miso, Egg Yolks, Bay Scallops, and Black Truffles

Every once in a blue moon, black truffles pop up at my local grocery store.  And I always caress the containers lovingly before passing on to other, cheaper delights.  But I finally decided to grab some black gold.  A very small bit.  This pasta recipe is plenty luxurious even without the truffles, so I think you could definitely leave them off if you have something called a *coughcough* budget *coughcough*.

Note: This recipe originally called for spaghetti, but that's no fun, so I decided cheese tortellini was the way to go.  But then I figured that wasn't much more fun than spaghetti, so I got tri-colored cheese tortellini.  Basically I went wild in the pasta department.

Tortellini with White Miso, Egg Yolks, Bay Scallops, and Black Truffles
Adapted from Joe Kindred, Kindred restaurant, Davidson, NC, as seen on

1 pound tri-color cheese tortellini
½ cup plus 1 tablespoon room temperature unsalted butter, divided
½ cup white miso paste
1 pound fresh bay scallops
Kosher salt
6 large egg yolks
Black summer truffles, finely chopped (optional)

Dry the scallops using a paper towel to remove as much moisture as possible.

Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil. Add the tortellini and cook the pasta according to the recommended cook time on the package. When the pasta is done, remove it from the water, making sure to reserve the pasta water.

In a small bowl, mix ¼ cup butter with the miso paste until smooth.

While the pasta is cooking, add 1 tablespoon butter to a large nonstick skillet over medium-high heat. When the butter has melted, add the scallops and gently cook until they are opaque, about 2 minutes. Do not brown the scallops. Add the miso–butter mixture and let the butter toast with the scallops for about 1 minute.

Add the pasta directly to the skillet with the scallops, tossing the pasta with the scallops and miso butter until the miso butter evenly coats the noodles. Add 1 cup of the reserved pasta water and cook the sauce down, stirring frequently until it’s reduced by half, about 5 minutes.

Add the remaining butter and cook until the liquid has again reduced by half. The sauce should be thickened but not pasty. If it becomes too thick (doesn’t pool at all in the pan and all the sauce is sticking to the noodle) then add a bit more pasta water to loosen it up. Remove the pan from the heat and stir frequently to release some of the heat.

In a small bowl, whisk the egg yolks with approximately 1 tablespoon of the hot pasta water. Stir vigorously. Slowly add the yolks to the pasta, stirring constantly so the eggs don’t scramble, until the sauce thickens and is a glossy, beautiful yellow color. Check for seasoning and add salt, if necessary. Stir in the chopped truffle.  Portion the pasta into 4 bowls and serve immediately.

Makes 4 servings

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