Molise is one of Italy’s forgotten provinces. Sandwiched between Abruzzo and Puglia, a two hour drive due east of Rome, Molise doesn’t have any fashionable cities, no luxury waterfront, zero famous foods. What it has are ingredients. Grapes, wheat, and olives, which, for the most part, are sold in bulk for companies in other more famous provinces to pack into brand name exports.
While it's technically correct that Molise doesn’t produce any famous foods, that’s not to say I don’t think some of them should be famous. They should. First on my get-famous list would be this olive. Marina calls it Mita but elsewhere in Italy you’d see it named Termite di Bitetto. For my money, this is the table olive of table olives.
They're good when they're young, still green (verde in Italian), and then simply cured in sea salt. But they're astounding when they're more mature and black (nera), likewise cured just in sea salt. Mita Nera have oodles of flavor that’s complex and sweet. They’re juicy and floral. They’re silky and luscious. In a word, they’re a stunner.
Try some first right out of the jar, as soon as you open the box from us. Next, rinse them under water a bit in a colander and dress them with some of Marina’s oil and a bit of lemon zest. Another night heat some up in a pan with fresh thyme, then douse them with olive oil. By then you’ll probably need to order another jar so might as well get two right off the bat.