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Green, black, natural, spicy, pitted, stuffed, pâté, with an appetizer or a salad, on a pizza, with fish, meat or pasta, the table olive pretty much lends itself to all occasions.
Most olives are harvested for their oil once they mature, after falling naturally from the tree. The most beautiful and fleshy olives in turn, are intended for table consumption and are harvested by hand, before falling from the tree.
The green ones, picked before maturity must be treated longer than the black ones, which are picked riper. But in both cases, they must remain in brine for 3 to 10 months before being sold, so as to remove the bitterness and to make them edible.
Olives in brine can be stored in their sealed container for one year. They should be kept in the refrigerator after opening.
Try some of our recipes that are featuring olives:
Originally published in the Journal de Montréal on January 26, 2013.