Of all the edible fungi (you might call them mushrooms), truffles are some of the most fascinating! Truffles are most accurately described as the “fruiting bodies” of mychorrhizal ascomycetous fungi. They are more commonly referred to as “sac fungi”. Other familiar examples of sac fungi include morel mushrooms, brewer’s yeast (for making beer & wine) and baker’s yeast (for making…well you get the point).
Unlike common forest mushrooms, truffles grow beneath the surface and resemble small clods of dirt beneath the soil. We most commonly think of pigs being used to harvest them (we’ll come back to that in a minute), but dogs, goats and bears are also used!
Some truffles emit the odor of specific mammalian steroids including androstenol. This chemical is found in the French Perigord black truffle (Tuber malenosporum) and in the testicles of swine. This is why pigs have such a natural
talent lust for truffle hunting!
Notably, the same substance is found in the underarm perspiration of men and in the urine of women. The simple truth is that the nose knows and that is perhaps why truffles have often been thought of (and used) as an aphrodisiac.
Whether that has any particular relevance to your personal enjoyment of truffles or not, the fact is that truffles are one of the rarest and most expensive foods in the world. They are also one of the most delicious! Truffles and eggs, truffles shaved over pasta, truffles grated into your mashed potatoes…truffles make LOTS of foods taste better. (we’ll discuss the reason why in an upcoming post) The French (and most of the rest of the world for that matter) are more fanatical (though less outwardly expressive) about their truffles than Green Bay Packers fans heading to the Super Bowl.
The problem is that truffles are produced in very limited quantities around the world. Imagine fresh truffles available here in Arizona, because they were GROWN here in Arizona! We have established a new company, Dutchman’s Truffiere, to do just that and we want everyone to be a part of this unique project!
You can find us online at:
www.dutchmanstruffiere.com – animated logo only for now, the site goes live the first week in March!
Facebook: Dutchmans Truffiere
We aren’t out to compete with the French, in fact quite the opposite…we want to help supplement dwindling supplies of these delicious fungi so that for decades to come more of us might be able to enjoy what was once prized as the “food of kings”. We have already put plans in place to cultivate and harvest 10 acres of land and you’ll be with us from the beginning. The soft start of our project will occur the first week of March.
At that time, we’ll introduce you to our project in all it’s glory with lots of details. In the meantime, bookmark the website, ‘like’ us on Facebook and Follow us on Twitter then share us with all of your foodie friends so that we can get the word out as we share with you the grand unveiling of our Arizona truffle orchard!