How many types of truffles are there?

There are many types of truffles, there are so many, over 60.
However, most of these are inedible and therefore remain unknown to consumers. Only 9 of these variants can be eaten, and even fewer (only the main 6) are those commonly available on the market for sale.

We usually tend to divide them into only two categories, the black truffle, which is cheaper, and the white one, which is much more prized (and expensive). In reality, there are nine varieties of truffles on the market, distinct from each other. Let’s see them.

1) Tuber magnatum Pico, commonly called white truffle;

2) Tuber melanosporum Vittadini, commonly called black truffle;

3) Tuber brumale var. moschatum De Ferry, called muscat truffle;

4) Tuber aestivum Vittadini, called summer truffle or scorzone;

5) Tuber aestivum var. uncinatum Chatin, called the hooked truffle;

6) Tuber brumale Vittadini, called black winter truffle or black truffle;

7) Tuber Borchii Vittadini or Tuber albidum Pico, called bianchetto or marzuolo;

8) Tuber macrosporum Vittadini, called smooth black truffle;

9) Tuber mesentericum Vittadini, commonly called ordinary black truffle.

How to distinguish the different species of truffles?

The most commonly used method to identify a truffle species is the manual organoleptic analysis, carried out within a short time of harvesting. The different types of truffles are distinguished by a series of characteristics:

  • The perfume, which is unique for each type
  • The flavor, also peculiar to each type
  • The appearance of the peridium, which is the outer rind
  • The appearance of the gleba, the fleshy inner part
  • The ripening period, which varies from species to species.

Precious White Truffle

Harvest period: from September to January

the white truffle is considered the truffle par excellence, its scent is unmistakable. Among the truffle species it is certainly the most precious.

Directions for use: ideal for appetizers, first courses, main courses of meat or fish, eggs.

Precious Black Truffle

Harvest period: from December to March

Also known as Norcia, Spoleto or Truffe de Perigord for the French. After the white truffle it is considered the most commercially valuable and is one of the protagonists of international cuisine. It has a black skin and the interior is dark with white veins.

Directions for use: ideal for appetizers, first courses, main courses of meat or fish, eggs.

Uncinato Black Truffle

Harvest period: from October to January

It belongs to the same species as the summer truffle, however its scent is stronger. The exterior is black, the interior is hazelnut.

Directions for use: ideal for appetizers, first courses, main courses of meat or fish, eggs.

In Campania there are numerous species of truffles, among which the most widespread and famous is the Tuber mesentericum Vitt., Also called ordinary black truffle or “Bagnoli Irpino truffle”, from the name of the Irpinia municipality where a real culture around this resource. In fact, the truffle in Campania finds its most favorable natural habitat in the mountainous area of Termino Cervialto, of the Picentini, between the provinces of Avellino and Salerno, but also in the mountains surrounding the Vallo di Diano , on the Partenio, on the Faito.

Have you ever tasted it?