November being fall is the most wonderful time of the year for me- it's Truffle Season!
I love truffles. I would describe truffles as having an earthy, pungent, nutty flavor that is truly unforgettable and intoxicating. They add an amazingly rich and robust flavor to most dishes. You'll know what I mean if you've had truffle fries!
So what is a truffle?
A truffle is a subterranean fungus that grows in the shadow of trees around the world hosting over 200 species. European truffles are regarded as the most common and best-tasting. The two most famous types of truffles are France’s Périgord black truffle (Tuber melanosporum) and Italy’s Alba white truffle (Tuber magnatum)
Most truffles in these areas are available in the fall and winter months. Black truffles have a more robust and earthy flavor than that delicate white truffles. They are also far more common, thus less expensive than white truffles. White truffles are regarded as “Earth’s gold.” as they are even harder to find than their black counterpart, and also have a shorter
season–about three to four months a year
(September-January)–and a short shelf-life. Black truffles can be frozen, while white truffles only have a shelf life of about 10 days and cannot be frozen.
For these reasons, truffles are considered a gourmet delicacy. As truffles are extremely hard to source and lose their potency quickly once they've been harvested. These factors make them one of the most expensive foods in the world. Italian white truffles are generally the priciest, they can sell for as much as $4,000 a pound. These highly prized White Italian truffles should always be used raw to best savor their potent musky, earthy flavors as they lose flavor and aroma if cooked or heated.
How to use Truffles
Finding fresh truffles in Ontario is challenging.
I was lucky Eataly. You have to keep in mind that it is important to maximize the flavor while using the least amount of truffle possible. Truffles can be shaved, slivered, and sliced to give your dish the fragrant truffle flavor you desire. Truffles infuse their flavor into whatever they are cooked with, which makes them the perfect star of any dish. When I purchase and use fresh truffles it's for those special occasions.
I like to have my truffle indulges more frequently without breaking the bank, so I use truffle oil and truffle salt and recently found truffle honey and truffle mustard. These truffle condiments turn ordinary foods into extraordinary foods. For instance, the next time you make a batch of frozen French fries or pop up a batch of popcorn, drizzle a little truffle oil and sprinkle some truffle salt it will be a whole new experience. Adding a bit of fresh ground pepper and grated parmesan cheese will just enhance the truffle flavour. Just as you would use fresh truffles, these infused truffle products should not be cooked with other strong flavors and aromas, or the prized truffle flavor will be lost.
Typically paired with high-fat foods like butter, cream, cheese, and oils, and for those expensive pallets, foie gras, as fatty foods work great and help bring the full flavor out. Less flavorful foods like pasta, rice, and potatoes, and even your Blanche pizza are perfect compliments to bring out the truffle. Mushroom risotto is a perfect example to heighten the flavour with a drizzle of truffle oil and a dash of truffle salt. Consider trying them on your scrambled eggs and even mashed potatoes- your taste buds will be dancing with joy with this umami flavour experience! Truffle mustard is amazing on a burger as truffle honey on cheddar or parmesan cheese is outstanding. I've read truffle hot sauce is all the rage and I've seen truffle ketchup and keeping my eye out for truffle hot sauce.
Both fresh truffles and truffle-infused products are being used to heighten cuisine from around the world. Chefs in Japan are combing truffles with bluefin tuna. . You can find sushi and sashimi garnished and embellished with fresh truffles or truffle products to add an extra level of richness and depth.
Ramen dishes offer new frontiers for truffle lovers. With varying combinations of fats in the form of rich meats and oils, proteins in the form of meat, seafood, or vegetables, and the distinctively noodles providing starches, ramen bowls offer a variety of ingredients for truffles to lend their essence to. The next time you’re enjoying ramen, shave a few slices on top of the warm bowl or drizzle a little truffle oil. This will unleash the aromas and perfume each bowl with an unmatched earthiness.
Fresh and wholesome, avocados pair amazingly well with truffles with the pair complementing each other perfectly. The creamy, smooth texture of avocados matches up nicely with the dark, deep richness of truffles. Your guacamole will be a whole new level and try it with your tacos.
Truffles are also being used to increase the appeal of elegantly crafted tacos across the world. Whether used to accentuate vegetarian tacos or shaved atop freshly cooked meats, when pairing truffles with tacos look no further than the interaction with the main ingredient. Truffles pair excellently.
Many of your favourite common foods are now available infused with truffle- truffle potato chips, truffle salami, truffle cheddar cheese, and truffle popcorn to name a few. Induglables is offering the truffle experience to you in a unique limited edition charcuterie box -Truffle Obsession just in time for Christmas. https://www.indulgables.ca/product-page/products-truffle-obsession
Getting the most our your fresh Truffles
If you get your hands on a fresh truffle you can get the most out of it and extend its shelf life by making truffle butter. Add this intense, rich decadence to nearly any recipe that calls for butter with this homemade Truffle Butter recipe.
Simply use truffle oil, black truffles, and salt, and you have the best truffle butter!
Truffle Butter Recipe 1 tbsp Truffle, black grated 1/2 tsp Salt 1 tbsp Truffle oil 1 cup Butter, unsalted softened
Combine all ingredients in a bowl until ingredients are well incorporated. You can also use a hand mixer and whip butter then add in the remaining ingredients. Place butter on plastic warm and gently form a log.
Enjoy a dab in your risotto, pasta, or on a slice of fresh bread are just a few ideas. There are numerous possibilities. Be daring and you'll soon be truffle obsessed!
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