Monday, 2 October 2017

Olives.



I must admit that I was not over enthusiastic about having an Olive tree, but now that it's there, I'm determined to process the fruits.

The tree is young, and the crop small, but I have consulted Signor Google (Olé) and he has given me a simple process to follow. This year is just an experiment, but even so I hope he's right.

Each individual Olive was given a whack with a kitchen hammer to break the skins (I'm sure people in Spain or Greece have a simple machine for this) then I put them all into a jar of cold water. This water must be changed every day for a week, and the glass jar thoroughly cleaned at each change. This, apparently takes away all the bitter juices.

The Olives will then be put into in a brine, consisting of water, salt and vinegar, and stored away somewhere cool.

I will let you know later how things went. Signor Google says it's all very easy; we'll see!



30 comments:

  1. That sounds good - 45 or so years ago when we had an olive tree the method suggested used saltpetre. We visited friends who were processing olives and the sight of their olives sitting in a mouldy looking mess put me right off so I buy mine ready made. Good luck.

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    Replies
    1. The method I'm using sounds very simple; I hope it works (or at least, doesn't kill me).

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    2. We left our for the pheasants. They used to jump up and if they came away easily they ate them, if not, they left them till next time.

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    3. Last year all of ours disappeared over night; I suspected the Magpies.

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  2. Good luck, i think you are doing right.

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    Replies
    1. I hope so Yael; I'll let you know.

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  3. Sounds like you're on the right track. Whacking them with a hammer is the way to go. Nothing fancy here. Also slashing them with a sharp knife.
    I'm sure they'll be fine and tasty

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    Replies
    1. I have one of those rarely used aluminium 'Steak Tenderisers', it did the job perfectly, but took some time!

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  4. How do you know when they're ripe? I didn't know they had to be whacked.

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    1. I heard they should be processed at the end of September. The flesh has to be broken to allow the water to take away the bitterness. I'm sounding like an expert, but that's all I know.

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    2. Olives aren't ripe enough yet to crush for oil but ours are just right for preserving. You defintely need 5 to 7 days of soaking and changing the water to get rid of the bitterness. Unless you're a native, greek and probably italian or french. They salt and eat them without soaking, love that bitterness.
      A lot of people don't whack them anymore. The whacking is to open up the flesh and get rid of that bitter taste but just soaking them does the same job.
      I'm not an expert either. My favourites are the ones sutffed with samlon or anchovies. Only recently found these, in our local LIDLS. Greek supermarkets have them sutffed with an almond. Not quite the same!

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  5. No squashed fingers in the process I hope.
    Greetings Maria x

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  6. I've got about ten olives on my two small trees .... and, they are small ..... I don't think that I'm quite ready to move on from shop bought just yet !!! I love mine stuffed with anchovies or almonds best. XXXX

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    Replies
    1. Anchovies every time; I never eat them without. If mine turn out OK, I'll have to store them in olive oil with some anchovies.

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  7. They all taste like Dettol to me.

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    Replies
    1. I've never tasted Dettol, but you make it sound rather nice!

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    2. I do love anchovies though.

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    3. I have been known to open a tin, and devour. They're very addictive.

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  8. I much prefer black olives Cro - are they a completely different variety or do green olives go black? Sorry to be such an idiot.

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    1. Green olives go black with age. The black ones are used for oil.

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  9. Signor Google knows everything! I hope the recipe turns out well for you. I like the tree, but not so much its fruit.

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    1. My fingers are crossed. I'm sure they'll be wonderful.

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  10. I remember a very long time ago you had to soak them in lye ? ? ? witch sounds just awful.
    Your way of curing them sound better.
    Hope they come out tasty. Love the anchovies stuffed ones the best. I always have tins of anchovies in the pantry.

    cheers, parsnip

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    1. Me too Parsnip. Small tins of Anchovies are used by the dozen in this house.

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  11. I wish I had an olive tree.....


    Sounds like the start of a poem

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    Replies
    1. an olive branch would be useful right now

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    2. Olive trees and Wales don't seem good bedfellows. In fact I don't think they look right here either. It won't be long before Spain has had all her ancient trees ripped out, and they'll all be re-planted in Surbiton or Wigan. Best leave them where they belong.

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  12. On the Camino de Santiago , I've been walking through lots of olive groves but nobody has started picking yet. In Australia we grow black ones for eating. We don't bash them, just cut a small cross with a surgical knife.

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    ReplyDelete

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