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Fresh Truffles

Fresh Truffles – The World’s Most Delicious & Luxurious Natural Wonder

No, we are not referring to the decadent bite-sized chocolate dessert with the same name. Truffles, also known biologically as Tuber, are edible fungi. The delicacy has been a treasure and harvested for centuries, primarily throughout Southern Europe. Truffles are most esteemed for their intoxicating aromas that quickly spread throughout one’s kitchen. It is one of the most sought out ingredients in the gourmet food industry and is now easily accessible with the help of The Truffle House.

Unlike others in the mushroom family, the fungi are grown beneath soil by attaching their spores to the roots of host trees, which vary based on geographic location. The truffles aid these host trees by extracting vital minerals and water to feed the plant from parts of the soil they are unable to reach. In return, the trees then produce sugar and other nutrients through photosynthesis that allows the truffles to grow. It would be rather difficult to grow without the host plant’s aid as the fungi do not have enough access to direct sunlight. Once matured, they are typically harvested, with the help of some adorable truffle “hunting” dogs, and ready to share with the world. This is the essence of a mutually beneficial relationship between truffles and their host plants. It’s a fascinating illustration of the unique collaboration between different organisms in the natural world.

Truffles also look entirely different than their traditional mushroom family members. They boast a hard exterior, often covered in spores or bumps, that come in a variety of colors. Every truffle will have a distinct difference in appearance and size. While they are typically on the smaller side, some truffles can grow to weigh over four pounds!

There are over one hundred species of truffles in the world, with approximately ten making it to your dinner plates. In reality, the most commonly made distinction between varieties is black or white truffles. Each truffle species boasts its own unique and distinct flavor. This depends on where they are grown, the climate endured, the chemistry of soil, and the type of tree roots they are associated with. Since no two truffle varieties are alike, you should expect different flavors when scoring truffles from different parts of the world. For example, Italian white truffles will boast a more earthy flavor, whereas Oregon white truffles grown in North America will feature some fruity notes. 

A commonality amongst all truffles is their luxurious connotations. Truffle-infused products or meals are some of the priciest delicacies on the market. Just about every five-star restaurant or even modern family-owned restaurant will feature an item with truffles on their menu. The Truffle House often supplies some of Canada’s best restaurant owners and caterers with our high-quality truffle products.

Truffles truly bring meals to the next level thanks to their remarkable aroma and taste. Featuring the delicacy in simple meals, such as white wine-based pasta dishes or vegetable omelets, turns it into a gourmet experience. Trust us, after a simple taste of some shaved truffles over your pasta or French fries – you will never want to go back to eating without truffles again.

How Truffles Became the Rare Delicacy They Are Today

The first record of eating truffles was featured in ancient Sumerian inscriptions referencing Mesopotamian eating habits dating back to 20th Century BC. Many other records from Ancient Greece and the Early Roman Empires mentioned the delicacy as well. Truffles made a comeback during the European Renaissance. They were sold in Parisian Markets and served to France’s monarch, King Francis I. Though initially enjoyed by peasants, the delicacy eventually signified the height of luxury and wealth. It became (and still is) a key component of haute cuisine throughout Europe.

Since then, the fungi have only risen further in popularity – featured on an assortment of dishes from creamy mushroom risotto to wagyu beef steaks to French fries. They simply elevate any meal to new heights! Regardless of what truffles are added to, they quickly become the meal’s highlight with their fragrant, earthy aroma.

So, what exactly makes truffles so special? The delicacy is like no ordinary common mushroom, boasting a unique and oh-so-tempting odor that captivates us to crave truffles constantly. While they are an expensive treat, the fungi are worth every penny for the remarkable culinary experience of preparing them.

Truffles can be found on multiple continents around the globe. Some of the most famous varieties are naturally grown in Southern Europe and Western North America. Although, rare black truffles from France and white truffles from Italy are the two most highly esteemed varieties. Their quality and desirability attribute more so to their rarity rather than geographic location. The notable Tuber Melanosporum, also known as the black Périgord truffle, though commonly gathered in France, may now be found in numerous countries in southern Europe, including Italy and Spain. Not to mention that this prized truffle is now being cultivated in Australia, the United States, Chile, among other nations due to increased demand.

Wild truffle production has significantly declined over the last half a century due to various factors, particularly the threats of global warming and heavy deforestation.  With the ever-growing gourmet food and fine dining world, these exotic and flavorful fungi have a much higher demand. They have since become much rarer to find, thus causing their cost to increase to meet demand. As a result of their high value, increasing demand, and decreasing supply, many truffle enthusiasts and entrepreneurs are now investing their money and resources to develop “truffières.” These are cultivated truffle orchards that grow truffles in areas in which they may not naturally be produced, such as Australia and Chile. With growing advancements and developments in scientific research, scientists and ecologists are now teaming up with investors and building large scale “truffières.” These profitable truffle orchards aim to produce very top-quality truffles. 

The Truffle House works closely with reputable truffle farmers and producers to attain some of the best truffle varieties for our customers, including the esteemed Black Périgord truffle.  We pride ourselves in ensuring we only select the most delicate quality truffles through ethical practices. There is no more extraordinary culinary experience than featuring tasty truffles to elevate the most basic of dishes to Michelin star restaurant quality.