Glut o' Olives
July 26, 2017 8:59 PM   Subscribe

The olive trees in backyard went nuts last summer, and so now I have many, many cured olives. Many. Jars and jars. And I just realised that it's about 3 months since I started eating them, and I've barely made a dent. I need suggestions for what to do with them.

I have mostly black (some in just brine, some in brine with a bit of vinegar), but do have some green. They are very salty, and still a bit bitter (how I like them). I'd particularly like ways to take them to parties or bring and share type events that are a bit more interesting that just taking them as is. I don't want to become that crazy person who brings black olives to everything.

Tapenade and olive focaccia are two things I'm going to try. Frugal ideas preferred.
posted by kjs4 to Food & Drink (16 answers total) 1 user marked this as a favorite
Cream cheese olive dip, pit the olives and toss them into a food processor with some cream cheese and pulse until mixed, but not homogenized. Scrape into plastic wrap and shape into a ball.

I made this for Christmas because I couldn't find any cheeseballs that weren't sweet and it was a hit. It's great for wraps and sandwiches along with crackers. I used brine/vineger Kalamata olives.
posted by FallowKing at 9:26 PM on July 26, 2017 [1 favorite]

Leverage them into martinis. If you told me you were coming over with home cured olives as long as I'd get the alcohol, you can believe there would be martini fixings waiting.

Or just bring them over as is. That might not seem interesting to you because you have become used to the idea of home picked olives. But it is very interesting to the rest of us. Oh yes.
posted by lollusc at 9:26 PM on July 26, 2017 [3 favorites]

It should take you a full year of chowing down and sharing at parties/potlucks/birthdays to eat your way through them. Then you can cure up a new batch and start all over!

Bringing olives to everything is how it's supposed to work! You have the olive trees, someone else has the apricot trees, someone else brings their asparagus crop to everything, and so forth. Keep it up!
posted by aniola at 9:53 PM on July 26, 2017


I haven't tried this one yet but I bet it's great too.

I do not have a mortar and pestle that can handle this kind of thing so I did use a food processor and it was fine. More than fine. I don't even like olives and I want that first tapenade as often as I can shovel it into my face.

If you have other friends with a glut of something maybe you can trade? When I lived in California I traded avocados and lemons with someone who had pears and plums.
posted by padraigin at 9:54 PM on July 26, 2017 [3 favorites]

I had a friend who had a garden that would overproduce and sometimes I would come home to a sack of tomatoes or zucchinis on my stoop. (She also left these for other neighbors, and I have since seen (joking?) references to "National Leave Zucchinis on your Neighbors' Stoops Day", so if your neighbors know you, maybe leave a jar or two - and a note, so they know they're from you.)

Also, thanks to a previous job, I am The Person Who Brings Cheese to the Party, so never underestimate that kind of label. Embrace it.

Also also, if I got a homemade jar of olives/tapanade for my birthday or Xmas or whatever, I would be thrilled.
posted by rtha at 9:57 PM on July 26, 2017 [1 favorite]

This recipe for baked feta with tomatoes (and olives) is quite tasty and suitable for parties as long as you can keep it warmish.
posted by praemunire at 10:02 PM on July 26, 2017 [2 favorites]

Do you have baking friends who would like to make olive bread to share?
posted by Mizu at 10:30 PM on July 26, 2017 [1 favorite]

I imagine that they'd make great Thanksgiving and Holiday gifts.
posted by spinifex23 at 11:05 PM on July 26, 2017 [2 favorites]

Send them to me?
posted by Stewriffic at 3:06 AM on July 27, 2017 [3 favorites]

oh man. Just because you're sick of them don't think your friends are. I can't think of a more welcome hostess gift/contributed appetizer than a jar of good olives. Do you ever add orange peel? Olives are especially fabulous for parties because a lot of people are trying to eat low carb, and olives fit right into the rare festive-delicious-low carb niche, especially for folks who are also trying to not stuff themselves with cheese.

If you want to eat them though, a weird but insanely delicious combination is olives ground up with prunes, as in chicken marbella.
posted by fingersandtoes at 5:50 AM on July 27, 2017 [1 favorite]

Response by poster: And I should have been more careful with my above the line question. I would like olive heavy recipe ideas please.

(I'm happy to give them away. Anyone in Sydney is welcome to some. But I have taken them to parties as is and they get politely tasted and then ignored, which is sad and a waste of olives.)
posted by kjs4 at 6:43 AM on July 27, 2017

Basic quiche with added olives and sausage is delicious.
posted by vignettist at 8:06 AM on July 27, 2017

Was coming in to recommend tapenade; that goes down easy.

There is a Provencal take on pizza, the "pissaladiere", that is just the crust topped with olives and carmelized onions, and sometimes a few anchovies. You can totally make it with frozen puff pastry sheets.

If you see this cookbook around ever, it's all recipes that use lots of olives, anchovies, or capers.
posted by EmpressCallipygos at 8:35 AM on July 27, 2017

Is an olive-and-herb pesto too close to the already-planned tapenade? I don't have a particular recipe to recommend, but to go the frugal route, one could make a parsley-and-walnut version instead of basil and pine nuts. Pesto could become a dip or be applied to a variety of proteins or starches.

I have this little olive cookbook on my shelf, which I'd hand you if you were nearby, but as it is there's no "look inside" on Amazon and it's all in U.S. measurements anyhow.
posted by jocelmeow at 10:20 AM on July 27, 2017

One of my favorite and simple olive tricks when bringing a nice cheese plate wherever: pit the olive, stuff with a bit of cheese (I like a small wedge of mozzarella that has been marinated in olive oil with herbs), wrap in a dry salami with a toothpick. Serve with cheeses and lavash.
posted by floweredfish at 6:57 PM on July 27, 2017

When I heard you say olives, I thought of Muffulettas.
posted by mmascolino at 11:09 AM on July 28, 2017

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