I used to think that I loved all Italian food. Then I learned about Sardinian cuisine.
Sardinian cuisine includes a type of cheese that is actually illegal in most places, including Italy! Casu Marzu is probably the nastiest form of cheese ever eaten in polite society. This sheep’s milk creation is the product of sunshine, fresh air and flies. The cheese is left outside to rot for a few weeks in the Northern Italy sun until it is literally crawling with maggots. Once the cheese is full of thousands of jumping maggots it is ready to eat (maggots and all).
In my kitchen, the presence of maggots is a good indication it is time to throw out your cheese. So how do you know when casu marzu has gone bad? When the maggot are dead. Once the cheese decays to the point it kills the onboard entomology experiment it has become too toxic for human consumption.
It is recommended that the diner cover the cheese with one hand or wear eye protection to prevent maggots from jumping into the eyes.
Okay. I am not %100 against eating live food. But I do not condone eating anything that presents the risk of getting a maggot in my eye. That is just too gross.