Please note: This page contains program information for a festival that has already taken place. For current information on the upcoming festival, see www.oregontrufflefestival.com
Contest Winner Recipe | Contest Finalist Recipe
Congratulations to recipe contest winner Merry Graham from Newhall, California. We asked Merry what inspired her to enter, and here is what she told us.
I received a Google alert about the Oregon Truffle Festival and the recipe contest. I searched their site and was intrigued! The Festival looked like a true culinary adventure for a foodie such as I! Eagerly, I mentioned it to my friend, Jennifer. She responded, “Let’s both enter and then one of us will win so we can go on a truffle adventure in Oregon together”. I kept putting off entering. Jennifer kept bugging me to enter! We happened to be in NYC because I had won a different recipe contest. We ate at a restaurant that listed the nightly specials on a huge blackboard; Cauliflower Soup with Black Truffles! Oh my! We had to order the soup! I loved the creamy gentle backdrop of the soup flavors against the star ingredient, Black Truffles. Immediately, I knew what I wanted to make for the truffle contest, a parsnip soup I had made at Thanksgiving. The creamy soup would be a perfect medium to showcase the delicate but distinct flavor of Black Truffles! And indeed, it was! I have made the soup three times since, lapping up every drop!
I love to enter recipe contests and have been for two years. I love the challenge. I gain so much through each cooking experiences! Last year, I won a trip to Scotland to compete in the World’s Porridge competition. I also, traveled to New York City to compete in Aetna’s Healthy Food Fight. My picture was on Times Square marquee after I won the competition and was crowned “America’s Healthiest Chef”. Tee Hee ~ there is so much flavorful fun just for entering a recipe contest!
I see ingredients as an artists sees a canvas and paints, with a little time and the right tools, a masterpiece can be made. Cooking is my art form. Almost everyday, I am brainstorming a new dish or cooking. When I am not in the kitchen you can find me writing a monthly food column for the local newspaper, keeping current with a Facebook cooking support group I lead, or writing a food blog. Oh yes, I do swim in an attempt to stay healthy too! I love spending time with family, friends and my first grandbaby, Hadley! After all, they are why I cook!
Parsnip and Celery Root Soup with Shaved White Truffles and Pomegranate Arils by Merry Graham
Pomegranate arils are used as a garnish here to add a pop of tartness, contrasting color, and a unique crunch. If pomegranates are not in season, additional shaved truffles would be great with the chopped chives along with a squeeze of fresh lemon juice.
Yield: 9 cups of soup
3 tablespoons olive oil
2 cups chopped leeks, white and tender green parts only
4 large parsnips, cleaned and cubed (equivalent to
4 cups chopped parsnips)
1 small celery root, peeled and cubed (equivalent to 2 cups chopped celery root)
2 cloves garlic, peeled and smashed (equivalent to 1 tablespoon finely chopped garlic)
6 cups chicken stock (preferably not low sodium)
1 teaspoon fresh thyme leaves
1/4 cup shaved white truffles, plus more to taste
1 cup heavy (whipping) cream
1 1/2 teaspoons pink Himalayan salt or sea salt
1 teaspoon freshly ground pepper
chopped chives, for garnish (about 1 teaspoon per bowl)
pomegranate arils, for garnish (about 1/2 tablespoon per bowl)
- Heat olive oil in a stockpot over medium-high heat. Add leeks and cook until soft and fragrant, about 8 minutes. Add cubed parsnips, celery root, and garlic and sauté for another 5 minutes.
- Add stock and thyme leaves, and bring to a boil. Reduce heat to a simmer and cook for 25-30 minutes, or until the vegetables are very soft and cooked through.
- Transfer vegetables to a blender or food processor (or use an immersion blender to blend vegetables and broth directly in stockpot). Purée in batches with stock until smooth (use caution when blending hot liquids).
- Transfer purée back to stockpot. Stir in heavy cream and warm to desired temperature over low-medium heat. Season to taste with salt and freshly ground pepper.
- Shave white truffles into soup and stir. Taste and add an additional 1/2 teaspoon salt, if necessary. Taste again and add more truffle shavings, if desired.
- Ladle soup into bowls. Sprinkle each serving with chives and place 1/2 tablespoon pomegranate arils in the center. The shaved white truffles will sink to the bottom of the bowls if the soup is not served immediately; if this occurs, stir again just before serving.
Black Truffle-Venison Ravioli and 3 Onion Reduction by Pam Norby
Yield: 20 ravioli
Serves 10 as an appetizer, 5 as a main course
1/2 pound venison
1/4 cup green onion
4 tablespoons olive oil, divided
1/2 teaspoon dried basil
1/2 teaspoon dried thyme
salt and pepper to taste
1 large egg
1/2 cup grated Parmesan, divided
2 - 3 tablespoons Oregon black truffles, minced
20 fresh ravioli sheets
1 whole onion, peeled and sliced
4 shallots, peeled and sliced
1 leek, cleaned, trimmed and sliced (white part only)
1/2 cup dry white wine
3 cups chicken stock
1 whole Oregon truffle, thinly sliced, for garnish
sliced chives, for garnish
- In a food processor fitted with a metal blade, pulse the venison and green onion until almost smooth, with a few chunks remaining.
- Heat 2 tablespoons olive oil in a skillet over medium heat. Add the venison along with the basil, thyme, salt, and pepper. Cook until the meat is no longer pink, about 3-4 minutes. Take off the heat and allow to cool.
- Add the egg, 1/4 cup of the parmesan, and the minced truffle to the venison and mix well to combine.
- Arrange ravioli sheets on a work surface and place 1 scant tablespoon filling in each. Press to seal.
- Heat remaining 2 tablespoons olive oil in a large saucepan over medium heat. Cook the onions, shallots, and leek until translucent, about 8-10 minutes.
- Raise heat to medium-high and deglaze the pan with the wine. When all of the wine has evaporated, add stock and salt and pepper to taste. Reduce broth by 1/3.
- Add ravioli to the broth and simmer for 2-3 minutes, or until they float.
- Remove ravioli with a slotted spoon and reduce broth further, until it has reached a syrup-like consistency.
- Plate ravioli with a pool of the reduced broth, and garnish with thinly shaved truffles, chive slices and finishing salt, if you like.