Olives arrived from the nice folks at Penna. Wonder as many times as I have stopped in the adjacent city to them, to purchase “finished” olives, I haven’t stopped in to see the Pennas? I’ll have to correct that next trip down I-5!
Years ago, living in Los Angeles, I had an olive tree in the back yard, and all it meant to me at the time (even tho I have loved olives since I was a sprout), was one big mess in the yard every fall. I never even thought of trying to cure them at home until a couple years ago, had a notion, ordered 10 lbs from Penna, and away we went. Problem? 10 lbs wasn’t nearly enough, people would have them at our dinner parties and demand to take them home – so we gave a lot away.
I think probably 20-30 lbs is the right amount for an olive loving household.
Olives off the tree are inedible. Very bitter. Rumor has it, one day a fair maiden was walking along the sea, and noticed that a bunch of olives had fallen into a tide pool. Desperately hungry, she nibbled a few – and they were delicious!
And thus (so the story goes) olive curing began. Today, large commercial operations cure olive with a lye solution, in order to speed up the process of leaching out the bitterness, but at home, I used the old-timey way, with either a fresh water bath for a couple of weeks, or a brine solution for a month or more.
One cracks the flesh of the fruit with a hammer or knife, to expedite the bitterness exiting during the bath/brine process.
Then into the drink they go. Penna has some curing methods online you might try.
I’ll keep you posted here, on how my process goes. I know this – with only 2 1/2 pounds in the drink, they won’t last long at our house!
Here’s a short video of the start of the process, and some fotos follow below.