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Minnesota Cooking: Olives - Different Ways to Prepare and Serve Both Black and Green

Updated on November 27, 2016

The Olive

I have acquired a taste for olives in my lifetime. My introduction to black olives came as a small child, my mother would buy a can of pre-chopped black olives and mix them with Philadelphia style chive flavored cream cheese. She would then make toast and spread this on her toast. It was a salty, nutty, oniony taste. I liked it.

Later, she'd buy the green salad olives and put them in dishes to add a salty flavor. They were good. We'd make homemade pizza and she would slice them for the top. Deviled eggs would each get a slice on the top for a garnish. Whole green olives were dropped into a glass of beer. Tuna fish was mixed with miracle whip and bits of olive were mixed in, again for the salty flavor.

When you go to the grocery store, there are many types of olives. What I noticed lately is something called 'thrown' or 'placed' olives. Placed olives are neatly stacked in the jar with all of their ends the same direction. Thrown olives are simply dropped into the jar, haphazardly with no regard to order. Salad olives seem to be the broken bits and pieces that are defective. They are good, too.

I found out that the reason that black olives are not placed in jars, is because people would be able to see them. Most people would see the black, murky fluid and their defense mechanisms would propel them away from that jar of olives and they would fail to purchase that particular jar. Apparently, black olives in black water are not visually appealing. They taste pretty good, however.

Black olives are picked green in some places and cured in lye to get them to turn black. This information is a little disturbing, but there must be enough grease in them to cause saponification, like what happens with soap, and the lye must become harmless... HOPEFULLY...

You, dear reader, can leave a message on the guestbook in regards to the real answer.

Stuffed olives

Olives are pitted and then stuffed. Olives have a stone inside with is removed with a tubular knife. This leaves a round hole which is perfect for filling with different things.

The olives in stores started out with a small piece of pimento pepper. Since then, I have seen olives stuffed with blue cheese, anchovies, jalapeno or onion. I am sure that there are more flavors of food stuffed into olives but these are the particular flavors that I have personally enjoyed.

I just eat them, however. I have never personally pitted an olive. I have never stuffed any. I have eaten them. That is my only skill.

Different Types of Olives

jar of pimento stuffed olives, available in at least two sizes: olive and Queen.
jar of pimento stuffed olives, available in at least two sizes: olive and Queen.
Black olives in a glass jar
Black olives in a glass jar

Using Olives to Garnish Deviled Eggs

Prep Time: 20 minutes

Serves: 2

Ingredients

  • 6 hard boiled eggs
  • 1/3 cup miracle whip
  • 2 tsp. yellow mustard
  • sliced olives
  • papricka

Instructions

  1. Hard boil six eggs.
  2. Cut eggs in half. Place on platter.
  3. Remove yolks and place in separate bowl.
  4. Take fork and mash yolks. Add miracle whip, mustard and stir until smooth.
  5. Spoon into egg whites.
  6. Add sliced olive to top of each filled egg white.
  7. Sprinkle papricka on top for color.
Cast your vote for Deviled eggs garnished with Green Olives

Curing Olives

Growing Olives

Deep Fried Olives

How About You

Did you know there were so many ways to eat an olive?

See results

Olive All' Ascolana

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