Bianchetto truffle (or whitish truffle), how to recognize it
The Bianchetto truffle is also known as Whitish truffle or Marzuolo truffle.
It also has a scientific name: TUBER BORCHII VITT. or ALBIDUM PICO
This type of truffle stands out from the Precious White for its intense smell and for its strong and penetrating flavor, which tends to spicy. Its flavour also recalls the scent of garlic, in a more intensive way compared to the precious white truffle.
If in the Precious White truffle the garlicy notes are lighter and its scents are mostly reminiscent of those of fermented cheese, in the Whitish truffle, these notes are more noticeable, recalling more markedly the taste of garlic.
Therefore, it is necessary to use it carefully while cooking because the risk of covering the taste of the other ingredients with the scent of Marzuolo truffle is very high.
But… let’s explore in depth the characteristics of the Marzuolo truffle, discovering where to find it and the best tricks to use it in your recipes!
Bianchetto truffle: the characteristics of this variety
What do we mean when we talk about Bianchetto truffles?
It is a variety of truffle that has many characteristics in common with the Precious White truffle.
The peridium, or the outer part of the truffle, looks like the one of the precious white truffle: it is smooth and generally irregular in shape. Unlike its precious cousin the Bianchetto truffle has an orange surface, tending to rust color.
The peridium of these two varieties may seem similar at first glance, but the gleba (the inner part) looks different: it is whitish and darker. Furthermore, it has brownish tones, with coarser ivory veins in comparison to those of the Precious White.
Bianchetto truffle also differs in size. The Whitish truffle is smaller (there are rarely specimens with a diameter of more than ten centimeters) than the Precious White.
However, the most substantial difference between these two varieties, as we mentioned before, is on the side of aroma and flavor: characteristics that make each truffle different and unique.
Marzuolo truffle: where to find it
But where to look for the Bianchetto truffle? Where to find truffles of this kind?
And, above all, when does its harvest period begin?
Unlike the Precious White truffle, which is harvested from September to January, the Bianchetto or Marzuolo truffle (Whitish truffle) harvest period goes from mid-January until mid-April.
This variety is often found in symbiosis with plants such as pine, cedra, downy oak, hazel and also domestic and maritime pines.
This type of truffle, in fact, is very versatile and prefers different habitats, as well as different soils (sometimes even very dry ones); it can be found both in flat areas and in the hills. The Bianchetto truffle can also be found at an altitude of more than a thousand meters above sea level.
The Marzuolo truffle is widespread throughout Italy: collection areas range from Emilia Romagna to Marche and Abruzzo, from Umbria to Lazio; but the Bianchetto truffle is also widespread in Campania, Molise, Basilicata, Puglia and, above all, in Tuscany.
In fact, there are several festivals in this area where to taste it, such as the Marzuolo truffle festival of Cigoli (San Miniato) and the festival of Certaldo.
Whitish truffle: the recipes
The Bianchetto or Marzuolo truffle is very often used in the kitchen to flavor both first and second courses, as well as to create appetizing appetizers. For instance, this truffle is used to make Marzuolo Truffle Croutons, a tasty combination of bread and butter perfectly blended with the taste of truffles.
The Marzuolo truffle is the best choice for many recipes, its intense garlicky and penetrating flavor, stronger than that of the Precious White, make it suit perfectly for:
- first courses such as risotto or tagliatelle with Bianchetto truffle
- fried eggs with truffle flakes (a classic of truffle-based cuisine)
- meat preparations (for example, pork loin with Bianchetto truffle).
In conclusion, the Bianchetto truffle does not like to be cooked and gives its best added in flakes as a final touch.
How to preserve truffles of this kind
The best way to use the Whitish truffle in the kitchen is:
brushing it carefully to eliminate the earthy part (1)
then wiping it with a damp cloth (2)
and finally dry it with absorbent paper (3).
After this procedure, the Marzuolo truffle is ready to be added to your recipes.
What about leftovers?
Leftovers can be kept in the fridge, wrapped in absorbent paper inside a glass jar.
Paper must be changed every day, otherwise it will absorb too much of the truffle’s moisture.
If you want to know more about its conservation, here are all the tips on how to preserve it and keep it ready for your recipes!
The adjectives that can be used to describe the magic flavour of the Bianchetto truffle are:
- Marked and noticeable flavor
Anyway, these are just some of the adjectives that we can use to describe the flavor and taste of the Whitish truffle.
The fragrance of this truffle is best expressed when the truffle reaches full ripeness, revealing a very intense aroma and a strong hint of garlic.
Each truffle, in fact, is different and has a universe of flavors to offer, from the sweetest to the most delicate, from the most marked to the most intense.
The important thing is to know how to use them and how to enhance the taste. A careful way of cooking and the right use of truffle in the kitchen make the difference!
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