It may not be the prettiest food we've ever seen but the 750-gram (26-ounce) white truffle shown above, is one pricey delicacy. The "Queen Tartufo" Alba ttruffle recently was auctioned off for $208,000 and will be served at a banquet in Hong Kong. The truffle had been shipped from Alba in Italy's Piedmont region to Hong Kong for the charity auction which benefits Mother's Choice, a charity that provides care for pregnant women.
It's an expensive year for the truffle market. A bad truffle season in Alba has driven prices up to an average of $4,000 a pound with small truffles less than an inch in diameter sells for around $50. Luckily you don't need a lot of truffle to make an impact. A few thin shavings over pasta or an omelette can make a simple meal luxurious. Black truffles from Italy are a cheaper alternative at $500 a pound. Or you can always go American, Oregon white truffles can be found for $40 for three ounces. They aren't held in quite as high regard as Italian truffles but they are gaining in popularity and there is even an Oregon Truffle festival held in January.