Truffle (its scientific name is Tuber) (pronounced as /ˈtrʌfəl/) is an edible mushroom. There are 2 kinds of truffles, which are black and white truffle. Unlike the other mushrooms, truffles do not grow in the ground and they are often found underground. Being parasitic to the roots of oaks, they are animals favorite foods, especially for wild pigs, squirrels, etc. These mushrooms are appreciated in French, Italian, Greek and Spanish cuisine. Brillat-Savarin, a French food expert in 18th century, called them “the diamond of the kitchen” because of not only the price but also their very special taste.

Kingdom (regnum): Fungi
Division (phylum): Ascomycota
Subdivision (subphylum): Pezizomycotina
Class (class): Pezizomycetes
Order (ordo): Pezizales
Family (familia): Tuberaceae
Species (genus): Tuber

Due to the price of 600 USD per 100 grams, white truffles are recognized as the most expensive mushrooms in the world.


About the nutritional value, truffles are higher in mineral content such as iron, calcium, potassium, magnesium, carbohydrates, protein and organic nutrients, etc. than the other ones. Therefore, they are known as a perfect nutritious, the rarest and most expensive food in the world. When serving truffles, the most important thing is to make them spread the enchanting fragrance. You should eat them according to the traditional way by cutting them into thin slices, then you eat alive or sprinkle on big sliced bread with butter and Italian cheese. Otherwise, you can stir fry them with eggs, cook porridge with chestnuts, make cakes or serve with pasta. All will bring you delicious taste.

Truffles are used moderately in sophisticated foods. They are a symbol of wealth and luxury. The premium white truffles can only be found in the areas of ​​Alba, Piedmont, North Italy and harvested in the falls (about every September to December). In those regions, dogs and pigs are trained to detect truffles in mushroom hunting seasons.

Known as the flavor of love, truffles are thought to be an effective aphrodisiac food by ancient Greeks and Romans. This view has made great impact on many modern Europeans. However, an American expert, who studied on truffles, said that this food is only able to boost sexual function for pigs but it has no effect on humans.

In 2005, the press published that one real estate magnate in Hong Kong had spent 125,000 Euros (approximately 3 billion dong) on buying one giant white truffle. Despite being considered “giant”, that truffle only weighs about 1.5 kilo.

Recently, it has been said that in France, 1.3 kilos of black truffles are being auctioned in which their initial prices are 1,000 Euros per kilo. See more on

 Translated by Hoang Oanh – Synthesized and compiled by Cac Thuy. 

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