Truffled Butter (And Truffles Potted in Butter.)

For the breakfast or luncheon table


Cut up a pound of sweet fresh butter, and dissolve it gently over a clear fire; take off the scum which will gather thickly upon it, and when it has simmered for three or four minutes, draw it from the fire, and let it stand until all the butter-milk has subsided; pour it softly from this upon six ounces of ready-pared sound French truffles, cut into small, but rather thick, slices, and laid into a delicately clean enamelled saucepan; add a full seasoning of freshly pounded mace and fine cayenne, a small saltspoonful of salt, and half a not large nutmeg. When the butter has become quite cold, proceed to heat the truffles slowly, shaking the saucepan often briskly round, and stew them as gently as possible for twenty minutes, or longer should they not then be very tender. If allowed to heat, and to boil quickly, they will become hard, and the preparation, as regards the truffles, will be a comparative failure. Lift them with a spoon into quite dry earthen or china pans, and pour the butter on them; or add to them sufficient of it only to cover them well and to exclude the air, and pot the remainder of the butter apart: it will be finely flavoured, and may be eaten by delicate persons to whom the truffle itself would he injurious. It may also be used in compounding savoury sauces, and for moistening small croustades before they are fried or baked. The truffles themselves will remain good for months when thus prepared, if kept free from damp; and in flavour they will be found excellent. The parings taken from them will also impart a very agreeable savour to the butter, and will serve extremely well for it for immediate use. They will also be valuable as additions to gravies or to soups.

We should observe, that the juice which will have exuded from the truffles in the stewing will cause the preparation to become mouldy, or otherwise injure it, if it be put into the pans either with them or with the butter. The truffles must be well drained from it when they are taken from the saucepan, and the butter must remain undisturbed for a few minutes, when it can be poured clear from the juice, which will have subsided to the bottom of the pan. We have given here the result of our first experiment, which we found on further trial to answer perfectly.