Welcome to week 16. I hope everyone is having a Happy Monday. This week I am very happy to show you our Olive crop at Kainga for this season. Yes you may laugh at the big amount of olives. Last year I think we had about three olives. Each year will be bigger and better,considering we really don't water this tree. It relies on natural rainfall and that has been very scarce around here. Ian and I picked these olives yesterday. Anyone driving by would have thought are they doing some ancient voodoo thingy. We were walking round and round the tree looking up through the branches for olives. Several had dropped to the ground which were useless and the birds had taken a nip out of a couple. A couple of years ago we went to a garden in the Open Garden Scheme that had a olive orchard. We were given a recipe that we have used in the past when I have got olives from elsewhere. The couple who had the open garden were originally from Jordan and it has been a recipe that has been used in there family for sometime.
How to pickle your own olives.
You can cure olives at any stage.
1. Either prick several times with a fork,make 2 small slits on the skin with a sharp knife,de-pip using a commercial de-piper,or bruise by bashing with a rolling pin. I always use a fork. This step will allow the water and salt to penetrate the fruit,thereby drawing out the bitterness. It also takes the place of caustic soda solution used in commercial processing of olives.
2. Toss immediately into a bucket of clean water and leave covered. Change the water daily for three to four days.
3. Dissolve 1/2 cup of salt for every 10 cups of water. Soak olives in this solution with a lid on,making sure the olives are submerged.
4. Pour liquid off each day and replace with fresh salt water. Repeat this for approx. 10-12 days. Taste for readiness. When bitterness is nearly gone,olives are ready for their final salting.
5. Make up a solution of fresh salty water at the rate of 1 cup salt to 10 cups water. Dissolve and bring to boil and allow to cool. Place olives into bottles and pour cooled sat-water over them,making sure the olives are completely submerged.
6. Top up bottles with 1cm of olive oil to stop air getting into the fruit and seal the lids on. Store the olive jars in a cool dark place.
Ian picked this zucchini on Saturday. I was planning on keeping it growing to see how big it got. Guess who is doing some cooking this week and maybe some more zucchini pickles are on the cards. It weights between 4 and 5 kilos. Last year we were battling to get any zucchini plants growing and this year it has been a feast.
Happy Monday to you all.