Discovering the Italian white truffle

In Piedmont, the white truffle (in Italian tartufo bianco, from the Latin word Tuber magnatum) has its own season which runs from the middle of September to the end of January.

Of course you need to have the permit to collect the white truffles, since white truffles are a delicacy that must be collected only at the right time. This is because it’s better to eat them fresh by shaving them right over pasta, especially the egg one. Many people prefer using the black truffle, such as the truffle butter, the truffle cheese, since it is seen as a gourmet.

It depends on your taste, and if you can’t decide which one works better for you or if you have never tried them, the only suggestion I can give you is to try both of them and then choose which one you prefer.

Remember then the three elements of the truffle hunt, which are the truffle (the trifula), the truffle searcher (the trifulau) and truffle dog (the so-called tabui, which helps to find it ).

Dogs are an important component, since they can easily detect the scent of a truffle that is growing under the ground. During a dry weather, dogs need to keep their noses to the ground to pick up their scent, while when it’s snowing or when the ground is damp, they need to sniff the air.

In fact, truffles grow under the tree roots, but they don’t attach themselves to root ends, since they are not directly underneath the trees themselves. They start to come out as spores, that is why the grow amidst the roots of trees.

Once you picked the truffles, you have to store them, and you can do that by wrapping them in a clean paper towel before placing them inside a glass container.