Wednesday, 10 June 2015

Brining your own olives

About a month ago my Greek neighbour and I had an exchange of homegrown fruit.  She gave me a about 12 kilos of Prahran grown olives for a bag of Prahran grown lemons..Fair exchange I think!  I'm not sure what kind of olives these are but they are tiny!  I usually use jumbo Kalamata olives when I brine my olives.  There was no way that I was going to individually split these.  I have left them whole and they are sitting in the brine.  I will taste test when I get back from Greece!  If you get your hands on larger olives use the method below.

Step One
One by one add to mortar and pestle and carefully split them.  Throw into a bucket.  Once completed add water to cover.  Change water everyday.  Do this for about 10 days when ALL olives have changed colour and there is no trace of bitterness.  (You’ll just have to taste test)

Step Two

In a saucepan add tepid water and a fresh egg.  If the egg is fresh it will sink.  Add salt one cup at a time until it dissolves.  Continue to do this until the egg floats to the top. Use this for your salt water.

Ratio for brine
2 cups of salt water
1 cup of tap water
½ cup of white vinegar

Once you have completed step 1 place your olives in a large jar and add the above liquids in order and continue to do this until all olives are covered.  Tightly seal and leave for at least a couple of weeks.  You can store in the brine for a year plus!  Marinade when needed.

I use the following ingredients for my marinade...

Marinade for green olives
greek oregano
fennel seeds
orange peel
lemon peel

Black olives-Throumbes style

Thrombes are the wrinkly black olives that you find in Greek delis.  Mum just gave me some of this seasons batch.  Delish!
Pick only very ripe black olives.  Place in a hesion bag and cover with rock salt.  Mix well and ensure that ALL olives are covered with salt.  Every day turn the bag over and weigh it down with a plate  and brick . Turning it ensures that the salt is evenly distributed.  All bitterness should be  removed by this process in about 1 months time.  Start taste testing after a couple of weeks..

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Have fun making them..

Carol xxx

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