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Olives, Olives, Olives!


Aurora
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I hated olives until I was about 32. When I spent a week in Croatia, there were bowls of olives at every restaurant, and when I didn't eat any I got nasty stares. So I started eating them. Now I love plain olives (mostly the wrinkly black ones). I'm not such a fan of olives with pimentos, and I still find the flavor of olives in cooked dishes to be too strong. (To me, puttanesca is appropriately named.)

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Sure, the recipe looks fine. Except that yellow onions are only useful for stock. White onions. And perhaps a bit of chile. Salt-packed anchovies as well.

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Serving fine and fresh gratuitous comments since Oct 5 2001, 09:53 PM

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I like olives in my vodka martini's and that's about it. I will eat the green stuffed ones, but if it has a pit in it, forget it!.

Marlene

cookskorner

Practice. Do it over. Get it right.

Mostly, I want people to be as happy eating my food as I am cooking it.

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  • 6 years later...

Let's say I want to make a fig and olive tapenade, but cannot find black olives anywhere (except for some very flavourless canned black olives).

http://www.davidlebovitz.com/recipes/tapenade.html

Would it really be a sin to use green olives? For some reason, black olives seem to have disappeared off the shelves of the few stores that carried them, and I can only get green ones or flavoured mixed black and green ones. How horrible would fig and olive tapenade made with green olives be?

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Let's say I want to make a fig and olive tapenade, but cannot find black olives anywhere (except for some very flavourless canned black olives). 

http://www.davidlebovitz.com/recipes/tapenade.html

Would it really be a sin to use green olives?  For some reason, black olives seem to have disappeared off the shelves of the few stores that carried them, and I can only get green ones or flavoured mixed black and green ones.  How horrible would fig and olive tapenade made with green olives be?

I don't know, but I'd do it. I don't like black olives.

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Try eating an olive and a bite of fig at the same time to test it.

I'm thinking it's gotta be a black olive. I've had this tapenade before (probably not this recipe) and I can't imagine it with green olives. I suppose it depends on the green olive, though.

This is a funny thread. Almost everyone's contribution is: I love olives. Most of us, I think, love olives so much we love just thinking about the taste of olives.

I do.

I really like a grilled cheese sandwich with olives on it, any color.

Cheese and olives period.

I like to bake nice things. And then I eat them. Then I can bake some more.

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:laugh:

My middle name is olive! (after my maternal grandmother)

I adore olives, the wrinkled black ones, the brown ones, the big green ones, the ones stuffed, all of them, espcially with blue cheese or really old cheddar. Yum, that's my favorite lunch, along with crackers.

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OK, I picked up the green olives, hoping the store would have black by now, but no such luck. I'm going to do a fig and green olive taste test, and if it sucks, I'll have to go with the tasteless black olives in a can. Such is life! I guess I can do the olive and grilled cheese sandwich route to use up the green olives, or stuff them with cheese (these are pitted, so I won't even have to do any work!). I've never done that before...it sounds so good!

Syrah--I can't believe you don't like black olives! I prefer them to the green. Actually, I didn't like either black or green until I spent 3 months in Morocco. Then I found out what olives were supposed to taste like!

Thanks for the ideas!

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OK, I picked up the green olives, hoping the store would have black by now, but no such luck.  I'm going to do a fig and green olive taste test, and if it sucks, I'll have to go with the tasteless black olives in a can.  Such is life!  I guess I can do the olive and grilled cheese sandwich route to use up the green olives, or stuff them with cheese (these are pitted, so I won't even have to do any work!).  I've never done that before...it sounds so good!

Syrah--I can't believe you don't like black olives!  I prefer them to the green.  Actually, I didn't like either black or green until I spent 3 months in Morocco.  Then I found out what olives were supposed to taste like!

Thanks for the ideas!

Can you find the little black ones marinated in oil and they are unpitted and wrinkled? True, pitting is a pain in the arse, but they are packed with flavor!

Do you have a grocery with an olive bar? There's one at our Giant Eagle.

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I've always felt that if you take an olive and squish it really hard and eventually wind up with a fairly useful and healthy oil... it's okay.

But otherwise... I've never had much use for them.  Particularly offensive to me are ones that have been pickled.  Not sure why.

Oh well, Rachel and I collectively are probably bumming out the olive lovers.  :biggrin:

Then again, I like tomato sauce but I'm not fond of raw tomatoes.  Maybe there's a theme here.

Actually, I think there might be a theme there. I didn't like Olives or raw tomatoes, although I liked olive oil and tomato sauce and even bruschetta until I was 24 years old.

It wasn't for lack of trying, I wanted to like them both, especially as a vegetarian. So many veggie sandwiches feature raw tomatoes and sometimes olives.

I slowly started to like olives when I tried a few tapenades in sandwiches and as dips. Tomatoes, I only started to like when I had an heirloom tomato served with fresh mint, drizzled with olive oil, sliced horizontally at a French restaurant.

Now, less than 2 years later, I seek out both olives and tomatoes, and my life (and diet) has become better for it!

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This made me so hungry for olives that I went out on Saturday night in a very pleasant rainfall and got the makings for Sazeracs as well as potato chips, a couple of kinds of cheese (the Roncal especially good), sun dried tomatoes, and a container of green Italian olives stuffed with garlic.

And ate a whole bowlful of them.

All the other stuff was meant to set off the olives, and it did.

I like to bake nice things. And then I eat them. Then I can bake some more.

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  • 3 weeks later...

gallery_14010_5452_33029.jpg

gallery_14010_5452_147686.jpg

I like olives because it's a great excuse to go out and climb a tree. :laugh:

We're at the height of olive picking season and it's a banner year. People are practically begging you to pick for them. Excellent!

Edited by hathor (log)
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  • 2 months later...
Can  you find the little black ones marinated in oil and they are unpitted and wrinkled? True, pitting is a pain in the arse, but they are packed with flavor!

Do you have  a grocery with an olive bar? There's one at our Giant Eagle.

Oops. I couldn't get oil-marinated olives, so I bought green ones, but I couldn't bring myself to use them. I live in Japan, and have never seen an olive bar here. Olives aren't very popular (an understatement, I think).

I found some salt-packed olives in a jar, and thought they would be better than the flavourless canned ones. Does anyone know if they should be rinsed first? The jar doesn't mention it (though the info is in Italian and Japanese, but I think I read it correctly), but I thought I'd ask.

hathor--what I wouldn't do to be you and pick my own olives! What did you end up doing with them?

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my name says it all, I love Olives with one big exception, those poor excuses for a rubber o-ring you can find in cans. I'm pretty sure an actual rubber o-ring from the hardware store would taste better, at least it would have some kind of taste.

I can't walk past the olive bar at Whole Foods w/o going broke (10.99 per lb now, if not more!), it's just all so good. Note: if sold per lb, pitted ones give you more olive :-)

I'd love to own a store that only sells pickled things and spices :-)

"And don't forget music - music in the kitchen is an essential ingredient!"

- Thomas Keller

Diablo Kitchen, my food blog

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gallery_14010_5452_33029.jpg

gallery_14010_5452_147686.jpg

I like olives because it's a great excuse to go out and climb a tree.  :laugh:

We're at the height of olive picking season and it's a banner year. People are practically begging you to pick for them. Excellent!

please tell us about these pictures! where, oh where...do you need help in Italy, by any chance?

I love olives, and use them whenever that briny, meaty flavor demands. Ordinarily, black trumps green, but sometimes I just crave the green--in which case the little picholine are my faves.


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Oops.  I couldn't get oil-marinated olives, so I bought green ones, but I couldn't bring myself to use them.  I live in Japan, and have never seen an olive bar here.  Olives aren't very popular (an understatement, I think).

I found some salt-packed olives in a jar, and thought they would be better than the flavourless canned ones.  Does anyone know if they should be rinsed first?  The jar doesn't mention it (though the info is in Italian and Japanese, but I think I read it correctly), but I thought I'd ask.

hathor--what I wouldn't do to be you and pick my own olives!  What did you end up doing with them?

I think I'd rinse the olives first. The recipe calls for salty olives, rinsed, and he's talking about olives in brine. You can always add salt to the tapenade if it seems to be needed. That looks like a good recipe! I'm glad you posted the link.

There's some interesting reading at the new Lindsay Olives web site. They have a section titled Olives 101 that gives information about flavor profiles of different varieties, curing methods, sources and so on. Elsewhere on the web site there's a recipe section. I was looking for spread or dip recipes and found some pretty interesting dinner dishes as well.

Edited by Smithy (log)

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  • 2 weeks later...

I’m getting Picholine Olives bulk, packed in water and citric acid. I soak them in water for a few days, and then I put them in a jar and cover them with olive oil. Sometimes I add a few herbs. I keep the jar closed, on a counter. They taste very good for up to 3 weeks. If I keep them longer, they become too soft.

Is there a way to keep them longer than 3 weeks at room temperature?

While they keep longer in the fridge, I don’t like the texture of the olive oil on the olives out of the fridge, even if I let them sit at room temperature for an hour.

Also, should I seek Olives not packed in citric acid?

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I’m getting Picholine Olives bulk, packed in water and citric acid. I soak them in water for a few days, and then I put them in a jar and cover them with olive oil. Sometimes I add a few herbs.  I keep the jar closed, on a counter.  They taste very good for up to 3 weeks.  If I keep them longer, they become too soft.

Is there a way to keep them longer than 3 weeks at room temperature?

While they keep longer in the fridge, I don’t like the texture of the olive oil on the olives out of the fridge, even if I let them sit at room temperature for an hour.

Also, should I seek Olives not packed in citric acid?

I am not sure. When making my own olives (starting with freshly picked olives) I use a 10% brine solution and about 15% vinegar and they kept pretty well for several months at room temperature without rotting or turning soft. I added lemon slices, garlic, grape leaves, bay leaves and black pepper. Before closing the jar I usually add a layer of olive oil to the top. I sterilized the jar before adding the olives.

Are the picholine olives completely pickled when you buy them?

Cheers, Sarah

http://sarahmelamed.com/

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I'm pretty sure that the olives you're getting are already cured (this time of year anyway). When you get the olives, taste the water they're packed in. If it's salty then the olives are packed in a brine and that's how they should be stored as Melamed mentioned above.

Since you mentioned you are receiving a large quantity, I should mention, olives don't last for ever. As olives age, more of their moisture leaches into the brine thus diluting it. You can mess around and adjust the brine salinity or simply refrigerate.

Remove only what you need for immediate consumption (drizzle those with olive oil if that's what you like), and leave the rest in the original brine.

I wouldn't worry about citric acid, it's used as a color preservative.

If the olives are packed in water let us know.

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  • 6 months later...

Ok, I jarred some olives per ChefCrash's recommendation above, and I've noticed that there is pressure building up in the jars. It actually blew the seal one a mason jar-is this normal, and what is it from? I opened the jar to release the pressure and the capped it w/ a new lid-was this ok? I am doing a three jar test run here, while I still have access to them at the market.

Thanks,

Jeff

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