Kasu marzu - rotten cheese with fly larvae

It is believed that exotic and often unpleasant-looking delicacies are a specialization of the Far Eastern countries. Japan, China, and of course, all of Southeast Asia offer hobbyists countless ways to taunt food sanitation. It turns out that old Europe is also not averse to joining this specific competition. At the forefront again is Italy, or rather, Sardinia - it is there that delicious rotten cheese is prepared, which captivated the hearts of many gourmets, and sent a considerable number of lovers of unusual dishes to the next world.

In Sardinia, it is called "wormy" cheese. It is made from Pecorino cheese. However, the maturation process goes beyond typical production. Kasu Marzu cheese is the result of decomposition. Special fly larvae - the popiophila (Piophila casei) digest the fats that make up the cheese. As a result of the digestive activity of the larvae, "Kasu Marzu" cheese is obtained. During the production process, the cheese becomes soft and gives off a small amount of liquid (called tears of cheese in Sardinia).

The larvae move quite briskly in the cheese head and feel at home. Sometimes they can jump up to 15 centimeters, so it is recommended to protect your eyes while eating. But when the larvae die in the cheese, it is considered toxic. There is a special technology for cleansing cheese from larvae, if they enter the human body, undesirable consequences may occur. Many simply put on glasses and eat the delicacy along with the larvae, believing that it is even tastier this way.

There is a high risk of decomposition of cheese to a toxic state, as well as infection of the intestines by fly larvae, accompanied by fever, stomach pains and bloody diarrhea. For this reason, casu marzu is prohibited for export, although it is recognized as a national treasure of Sardinia.

Interestingly, casu marzu is considered one of the strongest aphrodisiacs in Sardinia. It is recommended to eat it only for men, although ladies will not be hindered in this. Unless, of course, they want to taste the gooey mess with the larvae of a cheese fly jumping over it.