Annual Testicle Festival - You'll have a ball!!!
When: March 31, 2008
Open Bar 6:00 P.M. - Dinner 7:00 P.M.
Where: FES Hall ~ 190 N. Lee Ave.,
Oakdale Rotary Club
Oakdale Cowboy Museum
Tickets: $50 each
Tickets are available at Oakdale Cowboy Museum, Oakdale Feed & Seed, The House of Beef, The H-B and Lana's Spur of the Moment.
~ purchase tickets & souvenirs ~
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They're a pair of real life living legends. Team ropers Jerrold and Leo Camarillo are professional rodeo icons who have won many world championships. Their awards started pouring in when they were just a couple of kids on a ranch.
"Well, my dad was a rancher. We was raised on a ranch," says Jerrold. "We probably started punching cattle when we was three or four years old."
The Camarillo brothers are a big part of the small town of Oakdale. You can see for yourself inside Oakdale's cowboy museum.
"Well, Oakdale has had the unofficial title of cowboy capitol of the world for many years," says museum executive director Christie Camarillo, who happens to be the sister of Jerrold and Leo. "And I guess we just grow cowboys here. We are home to over 30 world championship rodeo titles."
If Oakdale is famous for its cowboys, it's infamous, perhaps, for something else. A very unusual festival, where people line up every year to eat...something you could call "cowboy cuisine".
"People call them 'mountain oysters' but they're not fishy, I guarantee you that," says Lee Scaief, who presided over this year's festival.
This unusual food, after it's cooked, looks a little like meatballs. It's what separates the bulls from the steers. They're the part of the bull that's removed when the bull is just a baby. And that gets us back to the Camarillo brothers and team roping.
The sport evolved from real life ranch work When a calf needed to be cared for, a couple of cowboys would go out, they'd brand him, they'd castrate him and they'd medicate him. But it was the part removed from the bull that interested Jerrold.
"I used to have a little salt and pepper shaker in my pocket and while we took a rest and let the other guys rope in the corral, I would go get a couple of those testicles and put them on the fire and when they got nice and cooked I just put a little salt and pepper on them and would eat 'em," says Jerrold.
So it's a cowboy tradition, eating these all-beef nuggets. And the Oakdale festival is a 22-year-old tradition that raises money for the cowboy museum and other good causes. All thanks to people who are also interested in that unique cuisine.
But how are they prepared? Well, the first step is to skin them and marinate them overnight. Here's festival president Lee Scaief's recipe:
"Wine and basil and garlic," he says. "And then we take them the next morning, we bread them. Then we take the breaded material and deep fry it. We also add bay leaf, rosemary, garlic and we steam them. And after that, they are very, very good."
And they certainly have a loyal following of "eaters". Several hundred people turn out to the Oakdale Testicle Festival - which is its official name, we didn't make it up! - every year. And as long as there are baby bulls, there will be plenty of product for the annual Oakdale testicle festival. And, you can be sure; Leo and Jerrold Camarillo will keep those doggies on the run.
~article courtesy of http://www.californiaheartland.org/
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