The Truffle Markets in Provence – Planning Your Visit and Recipes
It is more common to see summer truffles in the markets than in the past. However, this summer tuber may be related to the “Black Diamond,” but the taste is certainly not as distinctive. There is also a significant price differential between the summer and winter varieties. In peak months, the black truffle will command about 10 times the price (per kilo) compared to summer truffles.
In Provence, the black truffle is typically harvested between November and early March. During these months, you will find weekly truffle markets in the following locations, but go early…
Vaison la Romaine
St Paul Trois Châteaux
Suze la Rousse
Truffles and Religion
If you are visiting Provence in January, plan to attend the Messe des Truffes, in Richerenches. The truffle-centric festivities occur on the third Sunday of the month, which also happens to be the Fete de Saint Antoine. The festival has been running for over two decades; it includes a blessing of truffles in l’Église Saint-Denis. The church service gets started a little after 10 am, but don’t count on snagging a place inside. The village installs a video screen (outside), for the standing-room-only crowd.
Following the religious part is a public auction of the truffles offered by the rabissers (truffle farmers), in lieu of communion, to the church. The Confrérie du Diamant Noir et de la Gastronomie – an association of 300+ people passionate about both black truffles and related gastronomy – presides over the auction. The Church is the recipient of the funds raised during the bidding.
Once the formal part of the day is over, it’s time for a truffle-themed lunch and a glass of local wine.
Here, is a video clip of the festivities.
Hunting for Truffles
Recipes with Truffles
Black Truffle Risotto by Mas d’Augustine
Chicken and Truffles by Cocoa & Lavender