The Diamonds of Gastronomy
We were aware of an odor coming towards us, something musky, fiery, savory, mysterious, - a hot drowsy smell, that lulled the senses, and yet inflamed them, - the truffles were coming.
Ancient Romans believed that the truffle was created when lightning struck damp earth. Today, we know that the small tuber grows underground in the wild forests of northern and central Italy and is now found in France and other countries.
There are three varieties of truffles used in food. The white variety is a pungent Italian truffle with notes of shallot, the black from Italy and France is earthy and robust, and burgundy tends toward the delicate and aromatic.
Each truffle has its own distinct flavor, depending on the weather during its growth, the type of tree roots it grows on, and the bacteria inside it. In general, though, you can expect a strong, earthy taste (and smell) that's more like a perfume than a spice.
Craving Truffles?Once the truffle flavor is acquired it becomes something to crave. You will want to sprinkle your scrambled eggs, omelet, creamy risotto, bruschetta, or baked potato with truffle salt (yes, we have the genuine Italian salt), a fusion of fine sea salt and earthy, dried, finely chopped Black Truffles harvested from the Abruzzi region of Italy.
We only use real Italian truffles, no fake flavors so don't be fooled by false promises or low prices - we have been providing our Italian Truffle Salt for over ten years and have never found its equal.
Pasta - oh Yes!Top pasta with our Truffle Cheese Salt which takes the Truffle Salt and adds genuine Parmigiano-Reggiano from the Italian provinces of Reggio Emilia, Parma.
Parmesan is known as the “King of Cheeses” and there are many imposters (Parmesan cheese) but they lack the deeply rich, nutty flavor of our genuine Parmigiano Reggiano.
You cannot cook with truffle because the cooking process destroys the truffle’s characteristic flavor and aroma that render it a delicacy.
Although you can buy truffle-flavored items like oil, pasta, and even potato chips, these don't contain real truffles. Since truffles go bad so quickly, items with a long shelf life rely on man-made truffle flavor.
Never use truffle oils , they are made with chemicals that replicate the aroma and flavor – without containing any of the real ingredient.
Health Benefits of Truffles.Truffles have been treasured for centuries, and today, these fungi are one of the most expensive foods you can buy. Unlike mushrooms, which grow above the ground, truffles grow on tree roots 5 inches under the earth. It takes special skills to figure out where they are and gently collect them. Historically in the old world people used trained dogs and pigs to sniff them out.
Nutritional ValueThe serving size for truffles is small. One serving is 0.5 grams, about 10% of a teaspoon. One serving of a black truffle that's been preserved in water and salt contains:
- Calories: 10
- Protein: 2 grams
- Fat: 0 grams
- Fiber: 2 grams
- Carbohydrate: 0 grams
- Vitamins A, B, C, D, and K
- Lower cholesterol
- Control blood sugar
- Protect your liver from damage
- Reduce inflammation throughout your body
- Fight bacterial infections
- Help prevent cancer
It is important to only eat fresh truffle that comes from a known and trusted source. Once picked, truffles start to rot within 10 days. It's not a good idea to boil or freeze them to try to make them last longer. Freezing ruins a truffle's texture, and boiling zaps its flavor.
A truffle's odor and taste are so strong that a little bit goes a long way so only grate or scrape small amounts onto your food right before you eat. Try adding truffle salt to eggs, pasta, rice, sauces, chicken, and fish. You can also mix it into olive oil or butter.
Famous Chefs Comment on Truffle OilGordon Ramsay "engineered white truffle oil is one of the most pungent, ridiculous ingredients ever."
Anthony Bourdain "Let it be stated here, unto forever and eternity, truffle oil is not food."
Martha Stewart "I think truffle oil is one of the few ingredients that doesn't belong in anyone's kitchen. It's ruinous of most recipes."
Chris L’Hommedieu (chef de cuisine at Michael Mina, San Francisco) “I am against having it in the kitchen one hundred percent. I learned that from Jean-Louis Palladin at Palladin in Manhatten who threw the bottles against the wall when he found his chefs using it.”
Daniel Patterson "The one-dimensional flavor of truffle oils is changing common understanding of how a truffle should taste."
Why we don’t sell Truffle OilWe only stock genuine Truffle Salt, imported from Italy in its sealed jar to maintain absolute freshness and flavor.
Typical Truffle Oil adds will state, “Truffle Oil is an amazing condiment made by infusing essence of truffle into a base oil, usually olive oil. Truffle Oil comes in especially handy if you are unable to source fresh truffles for your culinary dishes. Truffle Oil imparts the exquisite flavor of Truffles into your favorite meals at a fraction of the cost.”
Truffle oil is a modern culinary ingredient, much less expensive than actual truffles, but with some of their flavors and aroma. Let the buyer beware, however since most are cheap imitations and contain no real truffle at all.
Most truffle oils are a synthetic petroleum product that uses a compound called 2,4-Dithiapentane, mixed with an olive oil base. It doesn't taste good and has a passing resemblance to truffles at first sniff, but it quickly devolves into metallic, gasoline-scented notes.
What is 2,4-Dithiapentane? ~ 2,4-Dithiapentane is the dimethylthioacetal of formaldehyde and is prepared by the acid catalyzed addition of methyl mercaptan to formaldehyde.
Real Truffle Oil? While anyone with access to fresh truffles can make their own truffle oil by submerging pieces of truffle in warm oil, this method does not produce a shelf-stable or safe product for sale due to the risk of botulism. At most, it will last for two weeks in the refrigerator.
So, how do you tell if the oil you have is one of the few real truffle oils or not? Simple - if the truffle oil has a strong, singular smell, it’s likely synthetic.