|Bolivia's Bull Penis Soup Soars in Popularity
Known as ‘’Caldo de Cardan’’ in Bolivia, the soup is renowned for curing hangovers and even male impotency. At the end of the working week in Bolivia there’s nothing people enjoy more than a bowl of their favourite soup.
But it’s not your standard vegetable or chicken variety. The dish they prefer most is “Caldo de Cardan,” or bull penis soup.
The dish has been around for generations but it’s gaining in popularity and even notoriety as a hangover cure.
In the La Paz working-class neighbourhood of Buenos Aires there are advertisements everywhere for “Caldo de Cardan.”
It seems people can’t get enough of it.
"Its very nice. It has a smooth texture and is also strong at the same time,’’ says Helen Conde who comes to the same restaurant every Friday for a bowl of the soup.
“It starts off warm in your body and then you get the taste of the meat,” she says.
The soup originated in the central Bolivian city of Cochabama and was mostly eaten by men at the end of the working week.
To get the perfect taste and quality you have to cook the soup with the penis for at least 16 hours.
Extra ingredients like potatoes and some other vegetables and spices are added to give it the unique flavour.
“Our recipe is a closely guarded secret,” says restaurant owner Gualberto Garcia Revollo. “But the main ingredients are the bull penis nerve and the hoof.”
Gulaberto serves his soup with the penis nerve intact as part of the dish. Other cooks prefer to leave it out and use the penis as the base for the broth along with testicles.
“The bull penis is a very tough meat and it can’t be cooked quickly in an hour or two,” Gualberto told teleSUR in between serving customers.
But Bolivian cooks say there is another reason this dish is so popular.
It’s widely known that Bolivian men eat “Caldo de Cardan” to help cure impotence and even as an aphrodisiac.
“It lifts your sexual mood,” says customer Carlos Rene Mendez in between mouthfuls of the white broth. “It’s virile and encourages you to have more sexual relations.”
“Caldo de Cardan”is becoming so popular that it is now on the menu at some of Bolivia’s top restaurants.
And Bolivians swear that if you’re looking for the best way to start your weekend, you can’t go wrong with a bowlful of this unique concoction.