It was once eaten only by the rich but Mundaring Truffle Festival aims to introduce truffles to ordinary folk, writes Teresa Yong-Leong
THE recent two-day Mundaring Truffle Festival was a runaway success, with long table lunches and master classes sold out.
Now in its sixth year, the MTF started with some 2,000 people attending the first one at the present fair grounds — the Mundaring Sculpture Park in Perth Hills, Western Australia.
The carnival on July 27-28 saw some 20,000 people checking out the 76 stalls. It was organised by the Shire Of Mundaring, the local council.
Apart from fresh truffles (also known as “black gold”), all kinds of truffle products, including truffle oil, butter and salt, were on sale.
Recipes on how to use the precious fungus were available and free samplings were given. Truffle popcorn and truffle ice cream were simply yum, as the Aussies would say.
Megan Griffiths of MTF said the annual festival is meant to be “a festival with a heart” as it aims to introduce this gourmet item to the public and not just to those who can afford it. Truffles cost about A$2,000 (RM6,000) a kg.
There were truffle offerings for as low as A$5 at the Loose Box stall, an award-winning restaurant in Perth, to introduce and give the public a chance to savour the mushroom.
She said 80 per cent of truffles produced in Mundaring are exported to the US, Europe, China and Singapore and only about five per cent is consumed locally.
Australia produces 80 per cent of truffles in the Southern Hemisphere with the oldest truffery located in Tasmania. New Zealand produces only a small quantity.
Truffle enthusiasts came from as far as Sydney and Singapore for the event which also showcased the offerings of three top-notch chefs — Loose Box’s Alain Fabregues, Bennelong’s Guillaume Brahimi and Bistro des Artistes’
Emmanuel Mollois. All the three restaurants are highly rated and immensely popular in Western Australia.
The chefs put together an amazing three-course lunch showcasing the iconic truffle and paired with lovely Watershed premium wines.
Participants of the master class also came away with tips and insights on how to prepare truffle dishes.