A Bad Smell Under The Nose

Here's a true story that popped up in my Facebook memories - and it made me laugh all over again.

At one time my niece worked as a housekeeper for an elderly, wealthy woman in Austria who lived in a big house. It was when the European refugee crisis was going on and she kindly took in a Syrian family. They were a very nice family and all was well.

However, a few days after the family arrived my niece noticed something in the fridge that was smelling very bad. When no one removed this bag of something unidentifiable (to her), she thought it was an item of food the guests had forgotten they had placed there.

A couple of days went by and the offending item was still there, so my niece threw out the bag.

In the evening her employer asked her what had happened to the truffles in the fridge. The penny dropped - that bag of smelly stuff had been very expensive truffles. House owner was exceedingly cross as they had cost her nearly 250 Euros (£200, $248).

My niece said her employer didn't speak to her for four days!

So there you have it, The Great Truffle Kerfuffle Of Austria.

A few truffly facts: 

It seems people react to truffles in absolutely different ways. And scientists are getting close to the solution of the mystery of why it happens. 

Almost 25% of the population don't experience the smell of androstenone - the chemical that contributes to the truffle musk aroma (and drives female pigs sexually ecstatic). 

Another 40% of people (like my niece) are extremely sensitive to androstenone: they say it smells like rotten wood or sweat. The rest of the population likes its scent. 

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  1. Interesting. Yeah, I'm sure the woman was upset, but someone should have said something about the truffles.

    1. Exactly! It's not as if truffles are an everyday ingredient!

  2. Never smelled one, but kudos for "Truffle Kerfuffle"!

  3. Interesting! But how awful for your niece. I was offered truffle oil over the tater tots I ordered yesterday. These are shredded potatoes formed into cylinders and fried to crisp, in case you didn't know. ~grin~ This was at a movie theater, of all places. I passed. Why mess with perfection? Heh... Be well!

    1. I see the phrase "tater tots" in lots of North American web stuff I read! Can't say I've ever eaten one though!