Black Truffle from Quercy

Montaigu-de-Quercy
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Black Truffle from Quercy

You want to do atasting of Quercy black truffle, but before venturing into atruffle market, it is better to prepare for this experience. Nicknamed the “black diamond of Quercy”, thisgastronomic star has tobe earned. To know it, find it and appreciate it at its true value, the Guide du Tarn Aveyron accompanies you in this quest for the "black jewel". Whether you are a foodie or a curious gourmet, you will not be disappointed by this exceptional product!


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Discovering the Quercy truffle

The black Quercy truffle is a fungus, but not just any! Its particularity is to live in symbiosis with a mycorrhizal tree by the spores of the truffle : in priority the holm oak, but also the hazel or the chestnut tree. Well hidden underground, in the heart of its host's root network, its harvest requires a good knowledge of the land, ancestral know-how and an association with an animal with a fine nose! It is all this that makes it such a rare and therefore expensive product.

Tuber Melanosporum ”, in its Latin name, is the star of truffles. We recognize her by her black dress, and her flesh slightly veined with white. But there are over 30 other varieties. Among them are gray truffles from Champagne, brown truffles from Alsace, white Italian truffles... If Quercy is one of the largest regions of French production, it is thanks to its terroir.


truffle

The magnificent black truffle from Quercy, delicious for amateurs

These calcareous and poor soils are favorable to this perfect symbiosis between the tree and its fungus. Indeed, this secretes enzymes capable of breaking down organic matter and therefore makes essential minerals available to its “ partner ”. In addition, this material retains water and facilitates its absorption by the truffle tree. In return, photosynthesis, carried out by the leaves of the tree, brings energy to the truffle, by the manufacture of sugars. This symbiosis is therefore a real survival technique, linked to a Mediterranean-type environment.

le saviez vous Tuber Melanosporum ” bears the common name of “ Périgord Truffle ”, but it is a botanical and not a geographical indication. It will bear this name whatever its region of production, because it is found in Périgord and Quercy, in the South-East of France, but also in Spain, Italy, the Eastern European countries and even Australia!


Collecting truffles (which we call digging ) is all about know-how and teamwork with a pig or a dog. The important thing is the flair of the animal and its patient training. Other collectors, very observant, follow specific flies...  


Black Truffle from Quercy

Truffle mycorized trees are usually quite stocky, as they grow on poor soils and are pruned in this way to develop the root system.  

These ancestral methods date back to Antiquity. Like all products, it has known its moments of glory and oblivion, according to fashions and legends. During the Middle Ages, the obscurantism that reigned, relegated it as a diabolical sign, surely linked to the aphrodisiac virtues that were previously attributed to it. It is said that it was François Vatel, the famous chef of Louis XIV, who gave it back its nobility by offering it on the king's menu! During the 19century, we went from occasionally pick to agricultural production. Often, it is complementary to other cultures, quite simply because it is a long term work. It takes about fifteen years for a truffle of mycorrhizal holm oaks to become generous.

le saviez vous If the production of Quercy truffles has developed, it is thanks or rather because of a disaster in the wine world : phylloxera (a disease). The regions, very focused on viticulture, had to pull up their vines during this scourge. However, truffles and vines have the same terroir and appreciate the same soils. It is not uncommon for the fungus to colonize the roots of the vine... Farmers quickly saw the economic potential and bounced back on this black gold to replace red gold!

la bonne idée

To find out more, you can visit the Maison de la Truffe in Comprégnac.


Black Truffle from Quercy

In the markets, the black truffle is presented with simplicity, trust the specialists to help you appreciate it!

Black Truffle from Quercy

Weighing is an important moment, this is where the price is determined

Our good addresses to find truffles in the Tarn Aveyron

The truffle markets are highly regulated, but it is also a guarantee of professionalism :

  • The Lalbenque truffle market is the oldest. It is an institution, created in 1961 by the first Syndicat des Trufficulteurs in the region. It is held every Tuesday at 2 pm, rue du Marché aux Truffes.
  • You can also find it on the Limogne market on Friday at 10:30 am.
  • Occasionally, the Martel market opens its doors on Saturdays. Find out about the dates and times, you shouldn't miss the start...


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The sale of truffles is a real ritual, an experience to be lived at least once for all lovers... The emotion is always great at the signal for the opening of the market, when the baskets are revealed and the regulars rush… A unique moment! But the atmosphere quickly relaxes... The producers will not hesitate to offer you a tasting and explain their business to you.

It is harvested from the end of November until the beginning of March. It is therefore one of the flagship products of the winter. To consume it fresh, it is during this period that you need to get it. But it can be found canned or jarred, frozen, juiced or dehydrated, all the rest of the year. It also perfumes many other products : oil, salt, butter, etc.

The price of the truffle is very variable, depending on the year, the climate, the demand… It can go from simple to double! The weight of a truffle is not indicative of its quality, it can range from 20g to 200g.


Black Truffle from Quercy

Sometimes they are impressive in size!

Our tasting advice

The black truffle of Quercy is the most famous and coveted. It exudes powerful and complex aromas. Its smell of undergrowth is very marked, with an earthy and peppery taste. It takes very little to sublimate all kinds of raw products and gourmet dishes. The so-called summer truffle is less tasty but also less expensive. It is found from May to August. It has notes of hazelnuts, which make it more subtle and delicate. It is perfect with fine dishes.


Black Truffle from Quercy

Simply grate a little truffle on pasta, on a buttered slice of bread, it's a treat!

Black Truffle from Quercy

Hmmm to be enjoyed with a light wine, why not champagne?  


To wash it, run it under a jet of cold water and really if necessary, rub it gently with a very soft brush, then dry it gently. Never use a hard brush and do not clean too intensively. To keep it, a waterproof box with absorbent paper at the bottom is enough, always in the refrigerator and not too long (5 days maximum) because it expires quickly and that would be a shame. Some also place it in the egg box, to give them an incomparable scent!

The list of dishes that can be truffled is endless, but the most famous associations are eggs, foie gras, mashed potatoes, or even a simple toast of buttered country bread! You should also know that it goes well with seafood as well as with meats. The truffle really allows all the follies, let your imagination run free!


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You are now well prepared for a tasting of Quercy black truffles. All that remains is to wish you a good appetite!

Did you like our article? Find more on our blog.

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