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Toro testicles, pampean tradition

The dish hides a series of customs deeply rooted in the gauchezz tradition.

Traditions
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Every  November 10, the Day of Tradition is commemorated in Argentina.  This holiday aims to  enhance the figure of José Hernández  . Journalist, politician, military and poet, he is the key man of the first century in Argentina. Through  El Martín Fierro , his key work, Hernández  forged a critical spirit and represented with detailed thoroughness what it meant to be Argentine at that time. 

Hernández's poetry is, to this day, the one that best takes up  key aspects of  Gauchesca culture .  The vast landscapes of the  Pampean region, the values of its inhabitants, the search for freedom, the appreciation of music and the work with the earth, were the most touched topics in this area work. Of course, the feeding of the gaucho pampeano was also a pattern in Hernández's lyrics. We present  one of the gastronomic traditions of  Pampeas  that brings together several of the key aspects that Hernández expressed with his Martín Fierro: the yerra and intake of toro testicles. 

The word  tradition  comes from Latin and indicates  something that is transmitted and delivered . Passed to Spanish, it refers to what happens from generation to generation. Traditions are not always kept intact and are most likely to be mixed with other cultural customs. This is the case of the war.  The pampean land has its origin in the first free gauchos and its pialada, activity of taming wild foals . It was a technique in which, armed with a loop of about 8 meters, the gaucho stops at speed an animal of more than 300 kilos. The foal is immobilized on the floor and the gaucho begins a separate story there.

Today, the war works somewhat differently. The pialada is used, but with young bulls that already belong to the gaucho. The  goal is to pialate the animal so that it falls into the war and, once immobilized, cover it . Infertility is one of the necessary conditions for the meat of the animal to be even more tender, but this is not all. Eggs or testicles of the bull are ritualized in an almost ancestral way.  The person who pialates the animal is responsible for deciding how the criadillas will be made  (name that receives the dish ready).

Toro criadillas not only represent a pampean eccentricity. They are also a  full demonstration of the rituals that exist behind eating meat in our country.The  most skillful gaucho is the one who pialates the bull; he chooses among his potential assistants, who will catch the bull. Once this part of the ritual is performed, you will also be in charge of deciding whether the testicles will be put on the grill or plow disc. Last but not least,  the gaucho, with an attitude of patriarch, will distribute with atine and justice the testicles trozados to his liking. 

If grilled, the criadilla is very similar to a gizzard and it is recommended to marinade with salt die. The result is a crunchy pump on the outside and with concentrated flavor inside, ideal for sanguchear. When the choice is for the disc, the sauteed of these is done with onions and garlic, so the texture, the way of ingesting and the taste change. Either way, criadillas have multiple variants worldwide, but these two are the ones that  most faithful represent a set of Pampean traditions. 

Publication Date: 11/11/2020

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We suggest you continue reading the following notes:

martin-fierro Martín Fierro: national poem
José-Hernández What other poems did José Hernández write besides Martín Fierro?

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