Weird foods of the world...A testicle festival in Serbia...Monday Travel Photos
Sorry to interfere on what you were hoping might be a normal Monday, but there's pretty weird stuff going on out there, folks.
Associated Press carried a story on the weekend about a remote Serbian mountain village called Ozrem, where they had the World Testicle Cooking Championship. Visitors get to watch cooks fry, flambe, broil and boil everything from bull to camel to even kangaroo testicles, which you'd think might be hard to get past customs. I mean, they give us a hard time when we bring cheese home from Europe, right?
"Bulls testicles are the best, goulash style," said last year's winner, Zoltan Levai.
"I came here last year and decided to come back," said Anna Wexler, originally from New York (that explains it) and now a citizen of Israel. "It was delicious. There was testicle moussaka, goulash, stallion, boar, bull and many other things."
I can only imagine what the trophy looks like.
Serbia, of course, isn't the only place in the world with unusual cooking habits. I was served bee pupa in China a few years ago, as well as snake. It wasn't bad. I'm not into things like liver or kidneys, but I did try some sweetbreads at a posh Toronto restaurant a couple months back. I wouldn't have them again, but I don't think there's anything wrong with eating just about anything that makes you happy.
We North Americans are pretty squeamish about such things. I did a Google search on weird food festivals in the U.S. and didn't come up with much. There's a zucchini festival in Eldorado, Ohio every year where they serve "zorn dogs and zice cream," which sounds pretty gross. They have a Spam Jam in Hawaii every year, Hawaiians being quite fond, for the most part, of the canned meat. You can go into a lot of shops and find Spam Sushi; a slice of spam on a roll of sticky rice wrapped in seaweed. It's pretty decent.
I also spotted something called the Weird Food Festival in Van Nuys, California; a part of Los Angeles in the San Fernando Valley. Apparently it's grown a bit, but it started out in some guy's apartment when he and his friends dined on Limburger cheese, Indian pickled mango and ketchup chips, which are still pretty exotic for Americans.
I've been lucky enough to see some pretty cool places in the world, so I thought I'd share them from time to time with a Monday mini-photo spread. Here's a few from the past few months; one of a lovely sunset at a friend's cottage in Muskoka, a shot at Sugar Beach here in Toronto (not far from the Star's office at Yonge and Queen's Quay) and, just for a hint of exoticism, a nice hillside village in Corsica.