Olives add savory flavor to appetizers and entrees

Olives add savory flavor to appetizers and entrees

We speak a ton about olive oil these times, but not so much about olives. It’s time to bestow a bit of awareness on them.

Have you ever wondered why birds don’t try to eat olives? Eco-friendly or black, clean-skinned or wrinkled by time and solar, an olive will hold on a tree until eventually someone picks it or it falls off by by itself. Olives are a lot also bitter to take in devoid of some kind of intervention.

For business olives, that intervention is normally lye, which removes the bitterness. But the lye strips absent most flavors, and olives cured in this way require to have taste extra back again, which is commonly carried out with a salt brine.

Olives also can be treated in drinking water, which must be adjusted frequently for months, or in salt. An “oil-cured” olive is initially remedied in salt to remove bitterness and then marinated in oil, normally with included herbs.

There are olive trees in the course of Sonoma County, some remnants of the mid- to late 1800s, when we generated commercial olive oil that received awards in Europe. Some others have been planted for shade and landscaping.

If you want to know a lot more about olives, their curing and their nuances of taste, take a look at donsolives.com. Don Landis, also recognized as Olive Don, couldn’t hold his typical Olive Odyssey this 12 months, for the reason that of the pandemic, but his internet site involves a checklist of retail retailers in Sonoma Napa counties the place you can purchase his olives. If matters go on to make improvements to, hope Olive Odyssey, held at Jacuzzi Winery, in 2022.

Today’s recipes feature some of my beloved approaches to use olives outside of basically nibbling them with a chunk of cheese and a number of slices of sopressata, a favourite afternoon snack.

I have been building this dish for so prolonged I don’t recall its exact source, while I know it arrived from someone’s very well-beloved Mexican cookbook with a tattered go over and stained webpages. Go through the recipe all the way by way of right before you start off cooking you do not want to neglect the steamed rice, which is exceptional for sopping up the delicious juices.

Drunken Rooster with Oil-Healed Black Olives

Will make 4 generous servings

2 tablespoons olive oil

8 bone-in, pores and skin-on chicken thighs

Kosher salt

2 onions, peeled and reduce into thick (⅜-inch) rounds

6 garlic cloves, minced

4 serranos, stemmed, seeded and cut into modest julienne

1 cup oil-healed black olives (see notice below)

1 2-inch cinnamon stick

3 to 4 whole cloves

1 teaspoon black peppercorns

½ cup hen inventory or broth

¾ cup dry sherry or Rainwater Madera

3 tablespoons chopped fresh cilantro

Steamed rice

Hot corn tortillas

Preheat the oven to 375 degrees.

Pour the olive oil in a weighty ovenproof pot established over medium warmth. Include the hen, pores and skin aspect down, and cook till the skins brown. Period the hen, transform it over, salt the pores and skin aspect and brown. Transfer the chicken to a plate.

Set the onions in the pan and sauté right until just limp, about 5 minutes. Incorporate the garlic and serranos and sauté 2 minutes more.

Add the olives, cinnamon stick, cloves and peppercorns to the pot. Established the chicken on leading, pour the inventory and sherry into the pot, address and bake till the hen is totally tender and the juices thick, about 40 minutes.

Eliminate from the oven and let rest, lined, for 10 to 15 minutes. Transfer the rooster to a serving platter. Use tongs to take out and discard the cinnamon stick. Spoon the onion and olive combination and the pan juices more than the rooster, sprinkle with cilantro and enjoy appropriate absent, with rice and tortillas together with.

Take note: The initial recipe calls for unpitted olives, and that is how I make it. If you desire to pit the olives 1st, sense free of charge to do so.

Variation: For a brighter, a bit a lot more acidic dish, use pitted environmentally friendly olives as an alternative of brine-healed black olives.


The roots of this dish are in California’s early ranchero a long time. I have adapted it to how we cook dinner now, but the spirit of the dish and its flavors are embedded in California’s soil.

Spicy Ranch Chicken with Chorizo Stuffing

Serves 4

1 pound bulk Mexican-fashion chorizo (see take note beneath)

2 serranos, minced

6 garlic cloves, minced

1 cup pitted green olives, these kinds of as picoline

4 tablespoons chopped cilantro

Kosher salt

Black pepper in a mill

4 chicken leg-thigh items

1 yellow onion, minced

1 teaspoon crushed coriander seeds

½ teaspoon ground cumin

1 tablespoon chili powder

1 cup dry white wine

1 cup chicken inventory

¾ cup blanched almonds, lightly toasted

2 limes, slice into wedges

Put the chorizo in a weighty sauté pan established about medium-superior warmth. Cook right until it presents up its excess fat and crack it up with a fork as it cooks. Drain off all but about 2 tablespoons of the extra fat, return the pan to small warmth and add the serranos and garlic. Sauté gently for 5 minutes.

Meanwhile, mince 50 percent of the olives and add them to the chorizo combination set the remaining olives aside. Eliminate the pan from the warmth and stir in 2 tablespoons of the cilantro. Flavor, time with salt and pepper and established aside to amazing.

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