[Sca-cooks] olive curing

Terry Decker t.d.decker at att.net
Tue Jan 3 17:03:59 PST 2012

> Can you describe more of what you did to dry cure your olives? It was 
> from this list that I found out that you had to cure olives; that you 
> couldn't eat them ripe from the tree.
> However, I don't think I've seen much on what it takes to turn fresh 
> olives into something edible. Did you just let the fresh olives sit in 
> salt?

Fresh olives aren't particularly tasty.  Ususally, green olives are 
fermented and black olives are cured, but there are no hard and fast rules. 
Commercial processors tend to use lye curing to expidite the process, but 
they can also be water cured, brine cured or salt cured.  Fermentation, to 
my limited knowledge, is undertaken usually with a form of water curing.

> <<< I had to soak the thing for a while to get all the salt out when I 
> was >>>
> Did this then produce a brine which soaked into the pottery? I'm not  sure 
> why loose salt would be difficult to get out of the ceramic,  otherwise.

Salting draws moisture from that which is salted, and it is not just water, 
but water containing organic compounds.  I suspect the problem is the pores 
of the pottery got filled with a brine containing some additional phenol 
compounds that then crystallized, requiring longer soaking to get them to 
dissolve fully than simple saline crystals would.

> So, has anyone else cured olives? What did you start with? I've never 
> seen fresh olives for sale.
> Thanks,
>   Stefan

And I would also enjoy any further information.


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