What it is: Cheese. It’s cheese alright, with live insect larvae. To us normal people, it’s a perfectly good block of Pecorino that is ruined by letting a “cheese fly” lay its eggs in the cheese. Once the eggs hatch, the translucent larvae eat through the cheese making it soft, which is when you know it’s ready to be eaten. By the way, there are THOUSANDS of these maggots making their way through the cheese by now.
Best part about casu marzu? It's considered unsafe to eat when the maggots have died. So they’re kept alive. And they jump. Up to 6 inches when disturbed.
Not only do you end up eating squirming, jumping insect larvae which you might not even be able to see, sometimes they don’t even die even after they’ve made their way through the acid in your stomach. Yup, these guys will throw their own party in your GI tract.
This “food” comes to us from Sardinia, Italy, and the only comfort I can offer about it coming to us is that it’s not available in the USA.