LA ROBIOLA O FURMAI NIS CUI SALTAREI
“THE ROBIOLA, OR SOFT CHEESE WITH SMALL WORMS”
The recipe for the production of the “Furmai Nis” is very subjective since many types of local cheeses can be used (for example Cacio cheese or Provolone, small Caciottas, Gorgonzola, Pecorino or Grana cheese) and other ingredients that are rigorously kept secret by the producers. The most used version in our mountains, where it is produced a softer cheese – the Robiola indeed – perfectly embraces this recipe that is: put in a jar made of glass the Robiola in pieces to let it macerate with alcohol or Grappa – or even Cognac – and a few little spoons of honey. Close the container’s cover and put it to rest in the dark; every three or four days it has to be opened to give the product some air and to pierce the mixture with a big pin, better if made of wood, in order to amalgamate the whole. When inside the jar will appear the small white worms, the “Saltarei”, that are needed to give the cheese that softness and that spicy flavour that is characteristic of this cheese, it will be ready to be consumed. A European Community law prohibits its production at commercial level for hygienic-health reasons, but privately it still is prepared just like it used to happen in the Middle Ages, when in our Province was produced the “Casum Placentinum”, meaning Grana cheese and if a few wheel didn’t mature or didn’t come out well, it was used to make the “Furmai Nis”.
(Translated by Laura Fugazzi)