Thursday, October 3, 2013

It is almost truffle season in France!!!

Just the other day, I was talking to someone about truffles. I was telling them that years ago, I read (probably in one of Peter Mayle’s wonderful books) that truffles used to be hunted using a pig. Apparently pigs have a keen sense of smell and can track down a truffle a mile away. (Well, perhaps not  a mile… but quite a distance!!)   A pig, with its innate truffle-sniffing sense, can find a truffle and root it out with its snout - even when the truffle is hidden almost underground!!

However pigs also love to eat truffles. So, since there was always a dispute with the pig over ownership rights (i.e. 300 lb. truffle-finders are always keepers!!),  they are no longer used in truffle-hunting. Instead, they have been replaced with ‘truffle-sniffing dogs’!! (Per Wiki: need to be trained, but easier to control!) As I recounted this tale to my friend, we laughed and mused about how much fun it would be to go on a truffle hunt. (From my mouth to the truffle-god’s ear.)

To see more of these photos and to read the story, check out  David Lebovitz's story about his hunt with the pig, on his  blog:
Lo and behold, guess what appeared in my email box today? An invitation from Johann & Lisa Pepin (who have a truffle plantation in the Provence) inviting me (and you - my dear readers) to visit them. They will tell us how truffles are cultivated and truffle dogs are trained, and we can go on a hunt for France's elusive "black gold" with professional hunters who know all the tricks of the trade. The hunters will even regale us with stories of truffle hunting successes and sabotage, and we will learn to tell the difference between the different types of truffles (French versus Chinese).
Interested? Contact me and I will help you plan a wonderful self-drive trip through the Provence which, of course, can include the truffle hunt.  (Truffle season: summer - May to September; winter - November to March)  

Or join me and a few other baby-boomer couples (no more than 6 couples) in the Provence during Christmas week (Dec 21 to 26)… as we share accommodations (6 private rooms, each with bath) in a fully- furnished, luxury villa.

Or join me from 27 December to 04 January for a week with ‘just us girls’... at the same luxury villa.  

(For both trips: a rental car will be available for each couple or every two women. )

1 comment:

  1. Travel along the Spanish coast, taking in the amazing views, relaxing on perfect beaches, dancing in the hottest clubs, and sampling the most delicious cuisine.

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