The truffle in Tuscany

The truffle is a particular type of mushroom, called hypogeous because it grows and develops underground and not on the surface like other mushrooms. In Tuscany it mainly grows in 6 areas and is linked to plants such as oaks, willows, linden trees, poplars, hazels, pines, cistus, whether they are in the woods, isolated or in rows.

Each truffle has its own specific growing environment and generally the most prized ones are obviously also the rarest.

In Tuscany, thanks to the variety of environments, all species of edible truffles can be found, from the prized ones to the so-called minor ones, but when you talk about truffles, I am sure that you think of the white truffle which is also nicknamed the “king of the woods”.

Truffle in the kitchen

Each type of truffle has its own distinctive flavor and personality and varies in weight, size, fragrance and use in cooking. There are six types of truffles that can be harvested, and the official season is regulated by the region of Tuscany. If you want to buy fresh truffles while you’re in the area, take a look at the dates on the seasonal calendars to make sure they are truly fresh and authentic.

The truffle in Tuscany

THE PRECIOUS WHITE TRUFFLE

(September/December)

The king of truffles that seems to grow very well in Tuscany is the prized white truffle, whose harvest goes from September 10th to December 31st, mainly in the areas of Mugello and San Miniato. It has an intense and fragrant flavor.

MARZUOLO TRUFFLE

(Late winter/spring)

The truffle marzuolo (also called “winter truffle”), collected from January 10 to April 30. The scent is softer and it is perfect as a base for combining different aromas and fragrances.

PRIZED BLACK TRUFFLE

(November/March)

The fine black truffle is harvested from November 15 to March 15. The flavor combines very well with meat, especially meat that needs long cooking. A variation of the above mentioned black truffle is the brumale truffle, usually collected from January to March and known in particular for its extremely strong and decisive flavor.

SCORZONE TRUFFLE

(The black summer truffle)

The scorzone truffle grows, instead, in abundance from June to November (the harvest goes from June 1st to November 30th). Its name derives from its particularly rough and wrinkled outer rind; it is not considered among the most prized truffles, but it combines well with other Tuscan flavors and is readily available especially during the summer months. Similar to this one in appearance and flavor, there is the hooked truffle, usually harvested from October to December.

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L' ABC del Tartufo