Karen Akunowicz

"The best way to cook with truffles is as simply as possible," says chef Karen Akunowicz, of the Northern Italian restaurant Fox & the Knife in Boston. Bold in scent and flavor, black winter truffles require very little coaxing to lend their heady punch to a dish, though Akunowicz does recommend using a bit of gentle heat, which helps develop and release their deepest flavor, as in this elegant-yet-hearty dish, which pairs creamy butter, nutty farro pasta, and a fortifying mix of wild mushrooms with just enough truffle to elevate each forkful. Black truffle paste, available year-round, melts beautifully into the buttery sauce, but when they're in season (November through February), Akunowicz recommends splurging for fresh black truffles, and using a rasp grater to get as much truffle goodness as possible into each perfect bite.
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Chef Joanne Chang and Karen Akunowicz based this recipe on the traditional dumplings Chang grew up making and eating at home. She says, “Making dumplings with my mom is one of the earliest childhood food memories I have. I remember Mom setting up the kitchen table with a huge bowl of filling, dumpling wrappers covering the whole table, and the two of us going to town folding as fast as we could before the wrappers dried out. Well, she folded as fast as she could; the folded dumplings looked like little couches to me and I would play house with them and my dozens of LEGO people.” When you’re making these dumplings, consider doubling the recipe- they’re delicious and freeze very well.MAMA CHANG’S PORK AND CHIVE DUMPLINGS WITH BLACK PEPPER–SCALLION SAUCE excerpted from MYERS+CHANG AT HOME © 2017 by Joanne Chang with Karen Akunowicz. Reproduced by permission of Houghton Mifflin Harcourt. All rights reserved. Slideshow: More Dumpling Recipes