Although truffles are extremely sought-after and their distinctive smell and taste are immediately recognisable among gastronomy connoisseurs and amateurs alike, few people actually know how this delicacy arrives on their plates. If you’re ready to fill your knowledge gap with some mouth-watering information, be prepared to experience an intense craving for truffles – particularly for those found on Tuscany tours – after reading this article.
Definition and History
Let’s begin with a little lesson in word etymology. ‘Truffle’ derives from the Latin tuber, which roughly translates to ‘lump.’ Although I personally think that ‘lump’ does not do the truffle’s irresistible aroma justice, the description stuck: in subsequent centuries, tuber gradually transformed into the word trufa in Spanish, truffe in French, and tartufo in Italian.
But what exactly is this delectable buy truffles uk lump? Although you may associate the word ‘fungus’ with ‘foot’ or ‘skin,’ it can actually be used in a pleasant context: namely in that of the tasty truffle. This fungal delight is generally found close to trees, such as oak, birch, pine, hazel, and beech trees, and grows under layers of leaves, fallen branches, and soil in autumn. Truffles were discovered as early as 3,000 BC, when the Babylonians were known to go to great lengths to find this culinary sensation. Today, they grow best in regions of France and Italy, specifically Tuscany, where they are generally harvested in October and November. Delizioso!
Kinds of Truffles
Categorising truffles is a complicated task that is based on a variety of factors, such as size, colour, shape, smell, and taste. Currently, there are approximately sixty-three kinds within the truffle’s most commonplace (and delicious) genus: the Tuber. In Italy alone, there are twenty-five types, nine of which are safe to eat. However, because they’re so rare and scrumptious, truffles can be jaw-droppingly expensive: for a pound of white truffles, expect to pay as much as $5900!