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Curing Olives

December 14, 2012 - GrowOrganic
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You can see it all now—it’s a sunny day and you’re sitting at a wooden table in your olive grove, eating olives and crusty bread, and drinking wine with your friends and family. You grew and cured those olives yourself. The question is—WHICH olives? Which olive trees will get prized positions in your olive grove? It’s like growing any other edible—grow the flavors you like to eat. You may already have favorite olives, or perhaps you’re from the school of…
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USDA Zone 7 is typically considered too cold for olive trees. But we’re gardeners, which means we want to grow beautiful trees that aren’t recommended for our zones. That goes both ways too—for every New Yorker wanting a Meyer lemon tree we have a Southern Californian longing to grow Bartlett pears. Tricia plants an olive tree in our latest video and that probably has you fired up about the beautiful and long-lived trees, with their crop of health-giving fruit. Here’s how…
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Video Transcript
Hi Im Tricia an organic gardener and I grow organically for a healthy and safe food supply, for a clean and sustainable environment, for an enjoyable and rewarding experience.

Olives are tasty and nutritious and if you've ever eaten a raw olive you know that they must be cured before eating. Theres several ways to cure olives; water, lye, a dry salting or lactic fermentation using a brine and the lactate fermentation is the way we're going to demonstrate today. Today ill be making Greek style brined olives, for this style of olives start with either all green or all-black ripe olives. It is helpful to select olives of a similar size for a more even curing discard olives that are bruised or scarred. As far as the supplies that youll need; at least a court but preferably bigger container made of glass plastic or ceramic i'm using this "Harsch" fermenting crock, a gallon size pot for mixing the brine, ripe olives and an ample amount of pickling salt.

Start off by putting the olives into the crock the ratio of salt to make the brine is three-quarters of a cup for every gallon of water. A third of the total water that your going to use for the brine needs to be hot so that the salt will dissolve faster. Then add the cool water after the salt dissolves before you add your brine to the olives put in your weight stones put a little cork plug so that the olives dont float up through the hole. Now it's time to add the brine make sure the brine covers the olives completely. I've moved my crock to an undisturbed location and i'm gonna let it sit here for about a week between sixty and eighty degrees. After a week you can mix up a second stronger brine using one-and-a-half cups of salt per gallon of water, drain off the first weaker brine and then add the strong brine this time we're gonna add a little bit of water into the reservoir this will prevent the growth of yeast on your olives while still allowing gas from inside the crock to bubble out. For bitter olives let them stay in the crock for about two months in the brine. Taste them if they taste good to you you can eat them right out of the crock in the brine. If you want them a little bit milder drain the brine and new brine and let them set for another month and then again you can eat them right in the brine. You dont have to live in Greece to have greek olives so cure some olives and grow organic for life!

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Categories: Fruit Trees, Olive Trees, Homesteading Books, Food Preservation, Food Processing & Preservation, Fermentation Supplies


jill Says:
Jan 5th, 2014 at 1:12 pm

Wow, this website is incredible!  I’ve been an organic gardener for years and am finding this website extremely impressive with the vast array of well done videos and information you guys cover.  Thanks for having such a stellar project!

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