Visiting Molise while staying at the rural residence Essentia, in the countryside of Larino, will give you the opportunity to taste traditional foods and ancient flavours among the typical Molise products.
A typical Molise dish par excellence, originating in San Martino in Pensilis is the Pampanella.
The pampanella is made with pork meat that is previously left to marinate in a mix of spices composed of sweet and spicy chilli along with garlic and then baked in the oven.
The result is a meat that has a bright red color, very soft and spicy.
The name of this dish indicates the pampino, the leaves of the vine where in ancient times meat was cooked; in fact, the exact name of this dish would be “pork cooked in the pampanella of San Martino in Pensilis”.
It is no coincidence that even today, despite the fact that there are many sellers and producers of this product, the best are still those of San Martino in Pensilis.
A tasty dessert to enjoy during your stay in Molise is the cauciuni.
These are large fried sweet ravioli, then served with sugar or honey that are prepared on the occasion of Father’s Day, March 19.
The cauciuni are stuffed inside with dried chickpeas and spices, to which is added some bitter cocoa that gives taste to this dessert.
Pasta with breadcrumbs
Another typical dish of Molise’s culinary tradition is pasta with breadcrumbs.
This dish was also prepared in ancient times on the occasion of the celebrations for St. Joseph, March 19, when it was common to meet with family and friends around large tables lavishly set.
In general, this dish is composed of long pasta such as spaghetti that is seasoned with fried anchovies, garlic and chilli, which is added to the crumb of toasted bread.
A very popular food in Molise is the codfish which is prepared in different ways: among all the most popular is the baccalà arracanato which means au gratin.
This dish is usually prepared on Christmas Eve and consists of cooking the cod in a pan in the oven, sprinkled with oil, wine and bay leaves for a very tasty result.
Another typical Christmas recipe to be tasted in Larino is the scarpelle: these are salted pancakes made with a batter made of flour, water and not very large brewer’s yeast that are served simple or with cauliflower, cod and anchovies.
There is also a sweet variant, served simply with sugar.