Because the season for white truffles runs from September through December and for black truffles from December through March, and because some people (and restaurants) can’t bear to live without truffles from April through September, enterprising truffle merchants now flash freeze them at -80°F (-62°C) for consumption in the off season.

The folks at Urbani Truffles & Caviar say flash-freezing leaves black truffles tasting incredibly similar to fresh. The freezing process maintains the fragrance of the white truffles, as well, they say, allowing you to serve white truffles all year round.

But instead of thawing them, a company spokesman says, just use your trusty truffle slicer and slice them while they’re frozen. Truffles are sliced so thinly that the slices will thaw in seconds. And if you thaw the truffles in the refrigerator before slicing, some moisture (and precious flavor) will seep out of the truffle. And we can’t have that….