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Sunday, February 08, 2009

Casu Marzu (Sardinian Maggot Cheese)

Casu what??? OK, fasten your seat belts for this one. We were just watching one of my favourite TV shows - Gordon Ramsay's " The F Word " . They do these little snippets in between the cooking demonstrations and this time it was to educate us on Sardinia's delicacy - Casu Marzu - fondly known as Sardinian Maggot Cheese. (for real).

So what the Sardinians do (and have been doing for centuries) is they take a perfectly formed wheel of Pecorino (sheeps milk cheese, dry and yummy), they cut the top off, dig out a little cheese to attract flies, then leave it for a few months to ferment. During that time, the 'cheese flies' lay their eggs and the maggots hatch. The maggots help with breaking down the fats in the cheese and promote fermentation. The cheese gets really soft and runny with a clear liquid forming in the center. The maggots are also clear about a 1/3 of an inch long and they can jump about 8 inches "in your face'' when you try to eat this delicacy!
Some people remove the maggots before spreading it on their Sardinian flatbread, and some treat this like a caviar and believe it is a powerful aphrodisiac (Pay attention Chef of mine - you would have to work a little harder than bringing rotten maggoty cheese to the boudoir with me!!!)
Here is the best part - if you open it up and the maggots are dead - they do not eat it, it is considered rotten and they throw it away!!!!!!
If it ain't good enough to keep the maggots alive, then it belongs in the rubbish!!!!!
I am sure I have disgusted enough of y'all for one night,
That is all the WiseWords I have for tonight,


SJ Martin said...

So should not have read that before lunch. I'm all for experimentation with food, but ewww.

Eric said...

You know, I saw something about this years ago on Food Network. Somebody like Anthony Bourdain did a segment on it. They said it was illegal for restaurants there to serve this "delicacy." However, if you knew the right people, you could get some. I think this is one that I would have to take a pass on.

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