Preserving Olives

We’ve been preserving food for a while now. It’s such a great way to take advantage of the abundance of produce you get at certain things, at certain times of the year, and gives you access to produce year round. It’s also delicious! And you know what goes into it!

We are so lucky in Portarlington where we have so many fruit trees, with so many people willing to share.

For now we’re finding ourselves preserving other peoples excess, until we get our veggie garden up and running, and we love it.

Yesterday Jay went and picked some olives with a friend and today it was my job to make sure they got preserved.

A few years ago I went to get olive oil from a local olive grove and was told that the best way to preserve olives is the following way. So I thought I’d share it with you.

Once you’ve picked your olives, you need to wash you jars and sterilise your jars. I wash them in hot soapy water, while preheating the oven to 180°C. Once jars are clean, pop them open side down, and the lids into the oven. Turn oven off and leave them in until it’s cooled.

Make sure you wash your olives and get out any sticks and leaves.

While jars are sterilising, make your brine. The ratio for the brine is 1 litre of water to 100gm salt. For this lot I used about 2 litres of brine. You put the water and salt in a big pot and bring to a simmer, make sure salt has dissolved.

Carefully get the jars out of the oven and put in your clean olives, then pour over the hot brine. Put the lids on tight.

Doing olives this way takes about 6 months. So you’ve got to be patient. Pop them away somewhere, but make sure you remember them to add to your festive season platters.

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