(For those interested in some cooking classes in the Portland area, a dear friend, Molly, is doing a few classes come up soon, starting on the 15th. She will be doing classes on bread making and broth and soups. Check it out here, if interested).
Elena and I were sitting on the grass outside our house when the mail came last week. We were thrilled to see a heavy box among the packages. We brought it inside eagerly, and opened it to find beautiful uncured olives.
I have always loved olives, and hated how expensive they were. I also knew that many olives have preservatives or were cured in unhealthy ways. But I had never thought of curing my own! One of my sponsors has organic olives to sell (only a dollar a pound!) right now and asked if I wanted some free olives to cure myself and blog about. I answered with an emphatic yes, despite the fact that I had no idea what I was doing. Curing my own gives me the advantage of knowing exactly how the olives are cured, and keeping them “raw” as well-enzymes in tact. Even if I was buying them, I would come out way ahead financially too!
With those lovely olives in front of us, it was time to get to work.
I washed them, and then cut a slit on every single one of them. Once I knew what I was doing, I fell into a rhythm. I thought about all of the hundreds of women in history who had done this simple task before and wondered how much faster they would have been at it than me!
It took me about an hour and a half to wash and cut all 25 pounds of olives.In the time it would take to watch a movie, I had a huge amount of olives ready to be cured. A good return for the time I took, I think.
I decided to brine cure them following the directions here. (It doesn’t mention green olives in the directions, but I was assured that it would work just fine for green). As I’ve never done this before, I am crossing my fingers that they turn out well. I have many weeks to wait before I find out how they taste, but I am thrilled at this chance to make my own olives without preservatives and other unsavory additions. I am hoping to get some black olives to cure as well.
I also consider this a very frugal choice, because at a dollar a pound plus shipping it comes to only 35 dollars for 25 pounds of olives. Quite the deal. I am definitely going to consider doing this every year. Olives are a great source of nutrition. To purchase your own, you can visit my resource page.
Any other olive curers out there? I would love to have you share your experience!
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