What a better way to spend a cold rainy winter's day, than going on a truffle hunt. Traditionally, in Europe, truffles were hunted by the farmers pig. I do recall reading many years ago that the old greedy farmers would only take their pigs hunting either late at night or very early in the mornings when his neighbours couldn't see under which trees his truffles laid.
The black truffle or "black Périgord truffle" is named after thePérigord region in France and grows beneath oak and hazelnut trees. The truffle industry in Australia is very new, having only surfaced in the past 10 years or so. Through technological advances, the oak and hazelnut trees have been inoculated with truffle fungus, allowing farmers outside of provincial European lands to explore the truffle mystery.
Now why are truffles so exclusive, rare and mysterious? The truffle season is limited to the winter months in Australia. The rainfall during the summer months, will affect the growth and size of the truffle hunted that winter. Thus the cost ... a wooping AUD $2000 per kilo. That equates to $200 per 100gm truffle. The below truffle weighed approx 35gms = $70.
Truffles have a shelf life of 7 days, so make the most out of the brief season. Placing a small truffle in Vodka or in a jar of honey, so then it has an unlimited shelf life. Making truffle butter, placing slices under the skin of a chicken before roasting or making truffle salt.