Did you know that there are Bulgarian truffles that smell underground in the Balkans, Ludogorie, Shumen plateau, and Strandzha? In fact, even during socialism, it was rumored that in Bulgaria there is a delicacy mushroom. For its development in our country, the saplings imported from abroad help during the powerful afforestation campaigns. Then many lindens, pines, oaks are planted. It seems that the roots of some of them were “infected” with the mycelium of the valuable fungus. In the 80s of the last century, an Italian expedition came to Bulgaria to explore the terrain and locate the truffle deposits.
The first Bulgarian black truffle was discovered between Ugarchin and Lovech. Several long-lived mushroom pickers are looking for the mushroom and will soon find white truffles as well. That’s how it all started in 2004. The big boom for Bulgarian searchers was in 2014 when large quantities of truffles were found. Today there are tens of thousands of truffle hunters in Bulgaria. Helpers in this endeavor are specially trained dogs that detect the specific smell of ripe truffles, although they are hidden underground.
There are about a hundred types of truffles in the world, but not all of them are valuable from a commercial and culinary point of view. The most expensive are white truffles, followed by black ones, which are called “white gold” and “black diamonds” because of the price.
What makes truffles such a valuable food? In ancient Rome, these mushrooms were believed to have a healing effect. In the Renaissance, truffles were used as an aphrodisiac. Only in the XV century in Italy from truffles began to prepare delicious delicacies. Truffles are a very strong antioxidant – it cleanses the body of toxic and carcinogenic substances. Eastern healers use truffle juice to treat the eyes. In Italy, truffle extract is the main component of cosmetic masks. But its most famous application is in higher gastronomy.