Cheese with Worms
Attention, hunters for incredible gastronomic adventures! A trip to Italy awaits you, which means an opportunity to find the most dangerous of the existing delicacies in the country – Kasu Marzu. People call it simply and simply – “rotten cheese”.
Kasu Marzu – a delicious Italian cheese with worms
Have you heard about the German cheese milbenkezee, which literally “produce” ticks? So – this is nothing compared to the delicacy of casu marzu. In the preparation of this incredible Italian cheese involved hundreds of larvae of a cheese fly. It is to them that a unique product owes its unusual taste, appearance and, of course, enduring fame.
The cooking technology is quite simple. A head of pecorino – Italian cheese made from sheep’s milk – is soaked in saline. It is important to maintain the right time so that, on the one hand, the taste does not deter cheese flies, and on the other, an environment for the multiplication of pathogenic bacteria is not formed.
Then holes are made in the cheese. Olive oil is dripped into them – it attracts flies and at the same time softens the surface. And finally, carefully prepared cheese is laid out in open places and left there until the insects lay the right number of eggs. After that they clean it – the cheesemaker’s work is finished on this, and the larvae come into play.
Within 3-6 months, they will selflessly eat rotting cheese and literally “pass” it through themselves – thanks to this delicacy, it will acquire a rich, sharp aroma, burning and spicy taste, soft and pasty texture. The readiness of cheese is determined “by eye”: according to the consistency and number of swarming worms, for this it is enough to cut off the upper crust from the head. In more seasoned versions, the texture is characterized by the presence of a clear liquid – lagrima (“tear”).
The best time for the production of this unusual Italian cheese is spring-autumn, when the larvae of flies are especially actively developing.
When eating cheese, you need to protect your eyes
In Italy, they eat kasu marza – with worms, not at all embarrassed that the disturbed 8-mm larvae can pop out from the cheese 15 centimeters. The most important thing in this case, they say in Sardinia, is to protect your eyes. You can close your eyes, put on glasses or just cover the sandwich with your hand.
Another vital nuance: if you eat cheese with larvae, you need to chew them thoroughly and in no case swallow them alive. Otherwise, they can cause damage to internal organs.
If the worms in the cheese have died – this is a bad sign. In Italy, such kasu marzu is considered toxic, and it can not be eaten.
However, not all gourmets liked the idea of eating Italian cheese along with larvae. Particularly inventive and savvy eaters have come up with a way to get rid of worms. To do this, a portion of Italian cheese must be placed in a paper bag and tightly closed. Left without oxygen, the worms will randomly leave their abode and emit a characteristic drum roll, hitting the walls of the packet. When silence comes, the package can be opened, the larvae can be shaken out and you can enjoy the delicacy calmly.
Cheese with Larvae
In Italy, there are several ways to eat the famous cheese with worms. If it is denser, it is cut into slices and placed on top of a cake. If, on the contrary, soft – spread on bread, like pasta. Traditionally, strong red wine is offered to cheese.
Italian worm cheese is the most dangerous on the planet
Many convinced gourmets, once in Italy, dream of trying the famous cheese with worms and from personal experience to check whether it is so good. However, doctors are not enthusiastic about such an adventure and warn: a gastronomic adventure can be very dangerous.
The smallest possible troubles are allergies, the biggest is the risk of damage to the walls of the stomach and intestines by tenacious larvae. In addition, toxic poisoning and intestinal infections cannot be ruled out. Not the most inspiring set of consequences, is it?
In the Guinness Book of Records, casu marzu is included as the most dangerous cheese in the world.
But in the homeland of cheese they just shake their heads: there are no official confirmations of the findings of doctors yet. And as if refuting all the dangers, in Sardinia cheese with worms is traditionally present on any holiday table. Moreover, he is even considered an excellent aphrodisiac, especially relevant for men. Not to mention the fact that, like all cheeses, this Italian delicacy is good for teeth, bones, muscles.
Kasu Marzu – “Outlawed”
A shocking Italian delicacy – cheese with worms – appeared on the island of Sardinia. True, no one can say with certainty when and to whom the bright idea of this recipe first came to mind. It is believed that, like many other discoveries in the world, this dangerous dish was born by mistake when the cheese maker forgot to remove the pecorino head and did not notice that it was chosen by the larvae of flies.