Kamis, 24 Februari 2011

What are the black olives you buy in cans?

: black olives

Why: When we were making pizza the other night, Chandler said black olives are just ripe green olives. Fair enough, but are the sliced ones you buy in cans (and put on pizza) a specific type?

Answer: They are usually California or Mission olives! But you can't eat olives off the tree, fyi, unless you want your bitter taste buds to be very upset indeed. Here are the facts:
  • Olives are usually cured in things like salt, water, oil, or lye. In some parts of the Mediterranean, they may be dry cured, which gives the fruits (fruits!) a unique flavor and texture and allows them to be stored for a long time.
  • Green olives are picked before they are ripe. Black olives are fully ripened before they are cured.
  • California or "Mission olives" (from Mission San Francisco Solano de Sonoma in Sonoma Valley) are traditionally cured in lye. They are big and meaty, and commonly used in Latin American cuisine and on pizzas.
  • Mission olives can also be made from green olives, but they naturally turn black during the lye curing process.
Omg, look at those figs.

There are other types of "black olives," of course, including:
  • Kalamata - traditionally brined, from Greece
  • Gaeta - traditionally brined, from Italy
  • Nicoise and nyon - cured with herbs, from France
Source: WiseGeek, Wikipedia

The More You Know: Do you want to cure your own olives? I kind of do. You can do it with lye, which is a dangerous poison, or you can do it with oil and hang them in a burlap sack. Or try something else.

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