Friday, February 6, 2015

Wait...Did I Just Eat a Testicle?

How many times have you asked yourself that question? Probably not too many. Maybe not ever. I wish I could say the same, but I'd be lying.

Last May, while eating a big bowl of pho at a Vietnamese restaurant in Rhode Island, I noticed several meat balls floating around in my soup and thought nothing of it. Then I bit into one and its round shape, mild taste, and spongiform texture was not unlike that of a bovine or equine testicle of some sort. I say that like I know what I'm talking about, but honestly I do not believe I have ever eaten a horse or cow testicle before.

I can't say for sure I would NEVER do so. But the fact of the matter was that at that particular moment, I was not mentally prepared to eat a literal ball with my spring roll and peanut sauce. And rather than inquire with the friendly waitstaff as to the origins of the ball, I just shoved the other three balls off to float in another area of the giant tureen of soup and kept right on eating.

Because I pride myself on adventurous and ethnically diverse eating habits, I remained plagued with the question though: had I or had I not just eaten a testicle? Only Google could have the answer.

So that night, I spent many hours feeling slightly queasy while frantically Googling "beef ball," "pho testicle," "Vietnamese soup balls," "testicles in soup," and similar combinations in an attempt to get to the bottom of the whole mystery.

My extensive research led me to the conclusion that in fact it had just been a meatball, and while it likely contained portions of testicle meat, it was not in and of itself a wholly-contained testicle.

So at least on that particular day, the question "did I just eat a testicle?" was--for better or worse--answered in the negative.

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