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Ox Penis. Seriously.

JoanN Mar 1, 2009 04:20 PM

I was in a huge Asian market in central New Jersey today and saw, in the frozen food section, piled high, at least 3 dozen ox penises. I’ve been in this store many times and never noticed them. Not that they weren’t there, but seems to me that a big sign reading “Penis,” in English, would have caught my eye before.

I know about eating penis to promote virility, but I thought that was mostly dried powder. Googling wasn’t particularly informative. I’m guessing the store might have been unusually well stocked with this item in celebration of the year of the ox? If so, what do you think people might have been doing with it? On topic, please. I’m thinking in terms of home-cooked dishes here. And would everyone partake?

  1. monku Mar 1, 2009 04:25 PM

    Maybe it isn't really "ox".......like oxtail isn't really from ox.
    That's as far as I'm going to go with this.

    2 Replies
    1. re: monku
      c oliver Mar 1, 2009 04:33 PM

      An ox is/was a large steer used primarily for draft purposes. Since they aren't used generally for that purpose anymore, I'm guessing the term is somewhat obsolete. So a "cow tail" and an "ox tail" are pretty much the same thing now. I'm guessing an ox penis is named the same way. Which still doesn't give OP any idea of how to cook it. Joan, did you google "steer penis"?

      1. re: c oliver
        Sam Fujisaka Mar 2, 2009 02:32 AM

        Oxen and their equipment are far from obsolete in the developing world outside of the US.

        JoanN, you're lucky to have such a well hung market.

    2. s
      sfbing Mar 1, 2009 04:29 PM

      There is a restaurant in San Jose, CA called Bun Bo Hue An Nam, which makes a special Bun Bo Hue with ox penis added to the rest of the offal (pork leg, beef leg, pig's blood). A couple of places in Hong Kong serve it with noodle soup. It is basically just like any other delicacy--a piece of muscle with an interesting texture and !ahem! possible medicinal properties.

      1 Reply
      1. re: sfbing
        choctastic Mar 1, 2009 05:18 PM

        We Asians are always about the "possible medicinal properties".

      2. billieboy Mar 1, 2009 04:31 PM

        Here is a site to drool over

        http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/world...

        1. alanbarnes Mar 1, 2009 04:36 PM

          A Chow video blog from a penis restaurant in Beijing:

          http://www.chow.com/blog/tag/pizzle

          1. Gio Mar 1, 2009 04:40 PM

            Seriously Joan.. Here's a couple of sites with recipes I found...
            http://www.eatingchinese.org/Nasty/NB0701.html

            Fuschia Dunlop speaks:
            http://www.sbs.com.au/food/article/33...

            2 Replies
            1. re: Gio
              JoanN Mar 1, 2009 04:57 PM

              Thanks, Gio. Did a cursory search, but hadn't found an actual recipe.

              What surprised me about this was that these were in a middle-class suburban supermarket, obviously meant for home cooks. It wasn't some bragging-rights restaurant or nasty bits wannabe. And it's hard for me to believe that a place like this would have such a large quantity of a product if they didn't have a very good expectation of selling it.

              1. re: JoanN
                Gio Mar 1, 2009 05:14 PM

                Yes, I agree. I suppose home cooks would have wanted the item in honor of the Chinese New Year. But here it is a month later and there are still so many unsold. The restaurant Dunlop mentions does have it on the menu regularly...it's in such demand.

            2. monku Mar 1, 2009 05:24 PM

              Just curious........what was the price? per pound or whatever you want.

              6 Replies
              1. re: monku
                JoanN Mar 1, 2009 05:29 PM

                What an interesting question. I'm ashamed to say I didn't even look. It wasn't posted on the sign, the store was pretty crowded on a Sunday afternoon, and I guess I didn't want to be seen to be examining the product too closely. If we weren't expecting a foot of snow tonight I'd go right back tomorrow and find out.

                1. re: JoanN
                  monku Mar 1, 2009 05:51 PM

                  OK.......I'm sure they'll still be there when the snow clears.

                  Now I've got something else to look for in the Chinese markets here in the Los Angeles area. Not to buy.....just looking.

                  1. re: monku
                    JoanN Mar 2, 2009 04:11 AM

                    They will be, but I might not. This is a market near my mom's house, not mine. If I can get there before I have to leave I'll be sure to do so and post back.

                2. re: monku
                  JoanN Mar 3, 2009 11:37 AM

                  $5.99/lb.

                  1. re: JoanN
                    monku Mar 3, 2009 02:06 PM

                    Thanks JoanN

                  2. re: monku
                    steakman55 Mar 3, 2009 01:53 PM

                    I think they are sold by the inch.

                  3. thew Mar 1, 2009 05:30 PM

                    i've seen penis on menus (not my own) in france

                    6 Replies
                    1. re: thew
                      l
                      Laddie Din Mar 1, 2009 06:14 PM

                      I feel like anything I write is going to be removed for being in bad taste, but can you tell me if the penises appeared to be... God, I know this post will be removed...recognizable as such? I ask because I have prepared testicles (Richard Olney's book calls them "frivolity fritters") and they were a treat deep-fried. Once I had soaked them and removed the flaps of meat, they could have been mistaken for any sliced deep fried thing. I'm guessing the ox penis would be served in such a way that calls attention to what is rather than disguises it? Because of the placebo effect? (strong like bull) God help me, I want to try it.

                      1. re: Laddie Din
                        thew Mar 2, 2009 03:30 AM

                        yes. the looked just like big steaming bull c*cks. being french - in sauce

                        1. re: Laddie Din
                          Gio Mar 2, 2009 03:58 AM

                          The presentation for the recipe I cited above is slices of meat elaboratly cut into star shapes and placed on a bed of greens.....
                          Google "ox penis recipes" in Images.

                          1. re: Laddie Din
                            JoanN Mar 2, 2009 04:17 AM

                            They were approximately two feet long and about an inch-and-a-half (maybe less) in diameter. The recipe Gio linked to above has you steam it and then cut it lengthwise to remove the urethra before slicing so, no, not served in a way that highlights it's "medicinal properties."

                            1. re: JoanN
                              alwayscooking Mar 2, 2009 01:15 PM

                              Re cooking procedures

                              A well used muscle requires a long, hot braise Otherwise the meat will be chewy rather than soft - but that's a personal preference. And from the pictures, this cut of meat seems nature-made for lardons or the spit.

                              1. re: alwayscooking
                                s
                                shallots Mar 4, 2009 03:43 PM

                                But if it's a steer, it's not well used.

                                Or even if it/they are from Gomers.

                        2. l
                          Louise Mar 1, 2009 08:41 PM

                          I've seen them in a market in Oakland Chinatown, and it was a while ago so not for year of the ox. They were long and thin tubes, a non-muscle looking kind of meat. I'd guess it's the spongy erectile tissue itself--in any case, it appeared to be skinned and blanched and pale like ready to cook tripe.

                          I have not bought them, nor to my knowledge eaten them. I suppose if there was some amazingly yummy dish to be made with them as there is with kidneys I might.

                          1. Passadumkeg Mar 2, 2009 02:07 AM

                            We love the Hong Kong Supermarket. We stock up every time we visit. Will look for the weenies next time we visit. Pair w/ durian?

                            1. greygarious Mar 2, 2009 02:56 PM

                              A friend who is a member of the Explorers' Club attends their annual meeting and banquet every year at this time in NYC. It has been among the many odd delicacies featured at that event.

                              2 Replies
                              1. re: greygarious
                                alwayscooking Mar 2, 2009 02:58 PM

                                Was it part of the initiation rite?

                                1. re: alwayscooking
                                  greygarious Mar 2, 2009 03:59 PM

                                  From their Events Calendar: "Note: While the event honors some of the most important and prestigious leaders in the world of exploration, it is also known for its rather untraditional reception – one that features an “exotic” array of such “culinary delights” such as Infused Madagascar Hissing Cockroaches, Honey Glazed Tarantulas, Scorpion Bruschetta, Sweet and Sour Bovine Penis with Pad Thai Noodles, Vertebrate Optic Globular Capsule Mousse, Maggots Suspended in Beet Gelee and other mouth-watering delicacies. Of course, there’ll be “regular” hors d’oeuvres for those less adventurous as well as a tribute to this year’s theme, featuring a “cornucopia” of exotic nuts, fruits, edible flowers and other tasty items."

                                  Groucho (I think it was he, at any rate) hit the nail on the head with that comment about not wanting to join any club that would have him as a member! Amen...

                              2. Passadumkeg Mar 2, 2009 03:02 PM

                                Forwarded this thread to my bro in Las Vegas. He replied that Ox swanstuk is commonly fourd in the Mexican supermarkets there.
                                Stuff your tamale with that, Scargod.

                                1. q
                                  Querencia Mar 2, 2009 03:15 PM

                                  If you go to the Chicago board and look around a bit you may find some archived past discussions of the African chuck wagons that sell lunch all over downtown. Apparently penis is one of the meats of choice. Said to be full of gristle.

                                  1. cayjohan Mar 2, 2009 04:40 PM

                                    One of our local markets sells this as "beef pizzle." If you Google *pizzle* you'll mostly come up with pet food chewie toys. Still, we're talking supermarket vittles here, so I don't feel so averse to trying it (hey, we eat pigs' ears in this house), but I'd really need a little kick in the rear to tell me WHY I should be trying this specialty meat. Aside from the "makes you strong" argument.

                                    Anyone?

                                    Cay

                                    1 Reply
                                    1. re: cayjohan
                                      coll Mar 4, 2009 01:41 AM

                                      Around here the dog treats are called Bully Sticks, so maybe they come from bulls and not steers? I mean if you're trying to google for info.

                                    2. Will Owen Mar 3, 2009 01:03 PM

                                      I haven't seen these presented whole in any of the LA area Asian markets, but always as stacks of lengthwise slices laid into your typical meat-case yellow tray with the clear plastic over it, and a label saying Bull Pizzle. It clearly is not muscle so much as a form of sinew, like bundles of silvery ribbon. First time I saw any I was with my wife's family, and her dad and brother and I had a simultaneously sympathetic reaction: OOoowwwww!

                                      1. jen kalb Mar 3, 2009 01:21 PM

                                        there is some stuff about this in Fuschia Dunlop's first cookbook.
                                        I think in the commentary to the oxtail recipe, to the effect that sometimes it is referred to as the "tail" check it out.,

                                        3 Replies
                                        1. re: jen kalb
                                          JoanN Mar 3, 2009 01:54 PM

                                          Thanks for pointing that out, jen. I hadn't seen it. She talks about having enjoyed something called ox whip soup and thinking that "whip" was just another word for "tail" before discovering that it was a euphemism for something else.

                                          Again, though, she mentions it as something served in a restaurant as opposed to something that might be made at home.

                                          1. re: JoanN
                                            jen kalb Mar 3, 2009 05:13 PM

                                            I just did a search - Gary Soup offers a recipe for this elsewhere

                                            http://www.cantonese.sheik.co.uk/phor...

                                            1. re: jen kalb
                                              JoanN Mar 3, 2009 05:43 PM

                                              That's the recipe Gio linked to above. Doesn't really make you want to run right out and try it, does it?

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