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Casu Marzu, Sardinian Maggot Cheese

This Sardinian delicacy has live maggots inside! Sounds disgusting? Just try it! The taste reminds of strong Parmesan

Casu Marzu or Casu Modde is a famous Sardinian sheep milk cheese, which has been banned by the European Union for health reasons, but you can still find Casu Marzu cheese at markets and private households.

The production process is pretty long and involves several stages. First, pecorino cheese is made by heating sheep’s milk. The cheese needs to remain uncovered so the flies lay their eggs inside. After that, the cheese needs to be left in a dark room for two to three months. During this time, fly eggs turn into maggots and eat the rotting cheese. The larvae then pass through the cheese giving it an exclusive flavour and texture.

Young casu marzu
Young casu marzu

The most exciting part is the process of consumption. The cheese can be eaten when the maggots are still alive, but if they are dead, it's a sign that something went wrong. Before eating Casu Marzu, you need to know that the larvae must be killed and well chewed before swallowing so that they don't stay alive in your body.

The production period runs from late spring until late autumn, roughly from mid-May to mid-November. Usually, Casu Marzu cheese is served with a glass of robust red wine.

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