Adam Richard Seger is passionate about food and drink. At present, he oversees operations for three LUSH Food & Drink locations in Chicago and manages product development for New York-based Adya Global. In this blog, he will share some valuable information about truffles—a sought-after ingredient enjoyed by foodies worldwide. What are truffles, and what makes them expensive?
Eighteenth-century French gastronome Brillat-Savarin called truffles “the diamonds in the kitchen” because these fungi grow in rare places and require a good environment such as the roots of oak, beech, hazel, and other similar forest trees. While truffles can be considered fungi, they grow underground, unlike mushrooms that multiply above ground. Culinary expert Adam Richard Seger says that truffles have been considered a luxury ingredient because of their earthy and garlicky aroma that affects their taste. However, the aromatic fungi are also highly perishable, which is why food connoisseurs all over the world are willing to spend thousands of dollars to get a fresh batch.
In the past, truffle harvesters have used pigs to find the ingredient. Nowadays, there are trained dogs that can locate the fungi up to three feet underground. Various types of truffles can be found all over the world. The most famous are the white truffles found in Italy and the black truffles in France. After harvesting, truffles must be shipped to restaurants and buyers immediately to preserve their freshness. To enjoy the flavor of the truffles, they should be paired with simple dishes such as pasta, potatoes, or rice to bring out their rich flavor.