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Eating Testicles for the First Time

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How to eat sheep testicles –

I had never eaten testicles before.

No, these are not my famous last words, but an introduction to a travelogue entry on how to grill up, prepare, and gobble down another animals’ balls. I must proclaim that I do not search for such subject matter — doing so would invariably land me on the Travel Channel — but it just sort of finds me.

A lamb died on the organic farm that I have been working at in Maine, and, to not let it go to waste, myself and another farmhand skinned it and chopped it up for meat.

Along with a rear leg, I also took the testicles.

It seems as if a man can get famous these days by getting video taped traveling around the world in search of testicles to eat. In fact, a quick survey of the Travel Channel will reveal multiple men who have made names for themselves in the travel world by doing just this. It is a funny world that we live in when a TV traveler can have a show by doing nothing other than chewing up the balls of unsuspecting mammals . . . and then, of course, washing them down with an insects or two.

I have traveled the world for 10 years, but I have never eaten a testicle. I am surprised by this. I would have thought that a sack of nuts would have been plopped down on a plate in front of me at some time in China, Thailand, Mongolia, or South America, but it hasn’t. I can remember going to the market near Hangzhou’s Wu-Lin square just to eat all sorts of weird oddities, like cockroaches, grass hoppers, worms and the like, but the deep fried testicles never called my name.

Wade with a lamb testicle

Wade with a lamb testicle

If this Vagabond Journey.com mission is going to amount to anything, I need to bite a few bullets, and give the people what they want:

It is my impression that Americans really love watching other Americans eat balls in foreign lands on the TV.

So I will give you what you want:

Wade from Vagabond Journey.com is now a testicle eater.

But all social jests aside, I really did eat a ball, for experiences sake, perhaps . . . or perhaps because curiosity tends to be one of the driving motivations of the traveler . . .

How to prepare testicles to eat

How does one go about cooking a set of lamb testicles to eat?

I obviously did not know what I was getting into as I held onto the sack of gooey little lamb balls. Can you just go onto the internet and search for a testicle cooking recipe?

Apparently, you can.

Rocky Mountain Oyster Recipe2 pounds calf testicles*
2 cups beer
2 eggs, beaten
1 ½ cups all-purpose flour
¼ cup yellow cornmea1
Salt and ground black pepper to taste
Vegetable oil**
1 tablespoon hot pepper sauce

With a very sharp knife, split the tough skin-like muscle that surrounds each testicle. Remove the skin (you can remove the skin easily if the testicles are frozen, then peel while thawing). Slice each testicle into approximately 1/4- to 1/2-inch-thick ovals. Place slices in a large pan or blow with enough beer to cover them; cover and let sit 2 hours.

-from http://whatscookingamerica.net/History/RockyMtnOyster.htm

It is a pity that I did not read these instructions before removing the testicles from the sack, and then plopping the set of scrotless balls down into a pot of boiling water. When in doubt as to how to cook something, my default reaction is just to boil it. Cooking can not go wrong when its sole intention is to make something hot.

So that is what I strived for: to make a couple cold, refrigerated lamb testicles hot. I watched them bobble in the boiling water. I could not help giggling.

Testicles removed from skin and being prepared to eat

Testicles removed from skin and being prepared to eat

From the above recipe,  I discovered that I had not fully removed the tough skin that covers the balls. So I removed them from the water and sliced open the tough skin that surrounds each ball. After cutting off the top of each, I was able to squeeze out the testicles.

What popped out was the testicle proper, the inner stuff — the food.

I then pulled off the epididymis of each.

It was now time to eat balls. I commandeered a friend into the venture — for what sort of sad fate would it be to sit down to a dish of balls alone? — and we made way to eat them.

“How are we going to eat them?” I asked.

“Well, we could dip them in ketchup,” answered my friend helpfully.

“Like chicken nuggets?”

Yes, like chicken nuggets we dipped our respective sheep testicle into a squirt of ketchup and brought it up to our mouths.

And it tasted . . .

Really friggin’ good.

Yes, let it be know, testicles taste good. Those fellows on the Travel Channel who go around eating balls in an attempt to gross out their TV audience are actually eating food that does not taste bad, gross, or weird in the least.

I must admit that my intention behind removing the balls from the lamb, prepping them, and eating them was solely for the purpose of having something interesting to report on the travelogue. I thought that I would bite into a fresh testicle and have it squirt unmentionable goo all over the inside of my mouth, and hence provide me with a dose of gross material to steal away your attention with.

But no, as with many of these travelogue entries, this one will conclude with a twist of anticlimax.

The anti-climax is this: boiled balls do not taste bad, and I am sure that properly prepared testicles taste delicious.

Now if I find myself traveling in some far flung land of testicle eaters — there are many such places — and I am offered a plate of balls as a delicacy, I will be able to gobble them down without reservation.

The irony of this tale is that my accomplice and I looked at each other upon finishing our ball, and realized that we wanted second helpings.

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Filed under: Food, Maine, USA

About the Author:

Wade Shepard is the founder and editor of Vagabond Journey. He has been moving through the world since 1999. He is the author of Ghost Cities of China. has written 2710 posts on Vagabond Journey.

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Wade Shepard is currently in: Shanghai, ChinaMap