Purveyor of Bollocks to the Crowned Heads of Europe
Sunday, 14 May 2017
Truffle my arse
Enough of the scary face already. Let's talk about more serious things. The British Summer Truffle versus the classic Perigord Black Truffle.
I have been very pissed off with various unscrupulous outlets - some of them very prestigious - who describe the British Summer Truffle as the Black Summer Truffle. There is a comparison, but it is tenuous in my experience.
I went for a drink at our Carluccio's today during a downpour, and bought a little jar of truffle butter to scramble eggs in - or with. When I looked at the label closer, I saw it contained a whopping 3% of Black Summer Truffle, which means it was probably dug up in Britain. If it were Perigord, then it would have contained about 0.3% truffle. Perigord truffles only grow in Europe.
I snouted the lid off, and - bugger me - it does indeed smell like truffle. I have refused to buy British Summer Truffle products up until now, because of the inferiority of flavour. Any fat will bring out the flavour of any mushroom of truffle, so I have hopes that this butter will make good scrambled eggs.
18th century Bath's outskirts were a renowned source of British truffles. They still are. I know where they grow and I know where to find them.
There is one grassy verge where all you have to do is wait for a squirrel (a grey, American intruder, of course) to begin scratching around to alert you to the position, and then just scare it away, using a face like my previous post. You then go up to the little hole it has prepared for you and dig a half an inch deeper, then there it is. A big, fat truffle like the above.
They are not as black-skinned as the French version (and they are and off-white on the inside) but they are as big and command about a third of the price as the Perigords, only having about a third of the taste intensity.
If this Summer Truffle butter is any good, then those alien squirrels have some work to do for me over the next few weeks.