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Storing Black Truffles from now until Christmas (5 days)

j
jljohn Dec 20, 2012 11:54 AM

I've never purchased fresh truffles before, but there are several local shops that have fresh black 'perigord' truffles on the shelf right now. From what I can tell, they just arrived yesterday or this morning, and I am told that, because Christmas falls on Tuesday this year, there won't be any more shipments until after Christmas. Again, from what I can tell, these are the proper melanosporum truffles, but they are of an Italian origin as opposed to French.

If I go get one today, will it keep for 5 days--for that special Christmas treat? Should I wrap it in a paper towel and keep it in a sealed container in the fridge, changing out the towel each day, or should I freeze it? Or, should I just skip it, because 5 days is too long.

Thanks!

Jeremy

  1. c
    calf Dec 20, 2012 05:52 PM

    "Until recently, I kept our truffles in jars of rice like everyone else. Then Leon Pinto told me they keep best under water. Not for three months, but for a week or two, they stay incredibly fresh. When something is stored properly, it retains its flavor and freshness longer. Ask your grocer for storage tips."

    —Le Bernardin Cookbook

    (Total coincidence, I'm in a library and had this book open 5 minutes ago.)

    1 Reply
    1. re: calf
      c
      chefathome Dec 20, 2012 05:54 PM

      That is very Interesting. I would not have thought that. However, they are not spongy like mushrooms but fairly hard. The texture reminds me of sliced almonds. I must consult my books on truffles, too, to see what they have to say.

    2. Pipenta Dec 20, 2012 05:42 PM

      Do NOT freeze them. Do NOT put them in plastic. Never store any mushrooms (unless they are cooked or dried) in plastic. It makes them rot.

      Store them in the fridge in a little paper bag or wax paper.

      1. c
        chefathome Dec 20, 2012 04:51 PM

        I've gone truffle hunting and have eaten them many, many times so know a bit about 'em. Truffle experts say to eat fresh truffles within 3 days for optimal flavour. Flavour really starts decreasing after that as I can attest to. Truffle hunters always say to keep them in glass, not plastic.

        5 Replies
        1. re: chefathome
          mariacarmen Dec 20, 2012 05:07 PM

          yep- learned this lesson, sadly, when the BF's boss gave us almost $300 worth of truffles already past the eat-by date! (he'd purchased them for himself, never got around to using them, asked my BF if we wanted them, i said yes! not realizing how old they were - 10 days past the date.) they still smelled absolutely wonderful, but the taste? Nada. completely flavorless. such a waste.

          1. re: mariacarmen
            c
            chefathome Dec 20, 2012 05:22 PM

            Oh, what a shame! That is a memorable lesson, that is for sure. :( Truffles just aren't something you shove to the back of the fridge and forget about...

            1. re: chefathome
              l
              Leepa Dec 20, 2012 05:25 PM

              So that old thing about putting them in a jar with rice is just hooey? I've never had a fresh one so I have/had no idea.

              1. re: Leepa
                c
                chefathome Dec 20, 2012 05:46 PM

                I would think that the rice would suck up the moisture and dry them a bit too much. Better that than allowing them to rot, I suppose. But then neither would not happen if they are eaten very, very fresh. I've had them several times minutes after coming out of the ground which is so much superior to those a few days old it's not even funny.

                1. re: Leepa
                  TraderJoe Dec 26, 2012 06:02 PM

                  So that old thing about putting them in a jar with rice is just hooey?
                  ------------------------------------------------------------------------------
                  FWIW That's the way most retailers in my area store them.

          2. j
            jaykayen Dec 20, 2012 03:08 PM

            In the fridge, wrapped in dry paper towel. You don't need to change the towel.

            Do unwrap it every day to check for mold, though.

            1. m
              Maximilien Dec 20, 2012 12:36 PM

              Last year, I kept them (a big one actually), wrapped with absorbent paper (the best you can get) in a plastic "tupperware" box.

              The box was big enough to put in a couple of eggs for them to get the flavour.

              (edit)
              The truflle lasted for a whole week.

              1 Reply
              1. re: Maximilien
                j
                jljohn Dec 20, 2012 12:41 PM

                Thanks! What would be a high-quality absorbent paper?

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