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Olives

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We have two mission olive trees in the country. Over the years, we have tried several methods of curing the olives, water cure, salt cure, brine cure, none with particularly delicious results. Ironically, a neighbor from Istanbul almost cried with delight over some we shared with him, saying that they took him back to his childhood. So the problem is finding the method that creates olives we like.

 

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Husband decided to revert to the lye method this time. It's simple if a little scary. Essentially, olives are left in a lye/water bath for about 12 hours, then drained and rinsed. Here, in the first water bath after the lye bath. You see that much of the dark color has been leached out of them.

 

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And here after several hours in clear water, ready for their next water bath. Several changes of water each day until samples taste free of lye, a "soapy" taste.

 

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To be continued...

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After three more days of water baths, the olives tasted ready to brine.

 

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After 2 days of brining, we dubbed them done. Rich olive taste, no bitterness, good salt. This is our best batch ever.

 

 

 

There are many ways to keep the brined olives, and we decided to simply keep them in brine in the fridge since there are only 3 of these 2 litre jars.

 

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FYI, the simple and concise directions are here. https://www.theatlantic.com/health/archive/2010/10/the-key-to-luscious-home-cured-olives-drain-cleaner/65276/ After years of following Sunset Magazine, UC Davis and many other supposed authorities, we have found one that is simple and works!

 

Enjoy.

 

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