Olives, a Fun Ingredient
Marty Martindale

Thank goodness North Americans have been liberated from olives mostly on a relish plate or pizza or in salads. Yes, olives are also wonderful in recipes and warm dishes! Just be sure to add them near the end of cooking. Experiment with olives, black, green, stuffed or not, in hamburgers, soup, side dishes, salads, sauces and more.

For a wonderful display of many olive varieties, visit the Cook’s Thesaurus, Olives.

Olive trees were first cultivated 5,000 years ago in Crete and Syria. Later, they thrived in Spain and the northern Mediterranean. Later Spain introduced olive growing in Peru in the 16th century. Next, Franciscan Monks took olives to the New World, to Mexico when they ultimately spread to California. Olives had a setback in progression until, after much research, California ripe olives developed. After this, North Americans had two colors of olives to enjoy.

Here are some serving suggestions for the type olives you prefer:

Combine with a favorite cooked vegetable:  Olives, sun-dried tomatoes, olive oil, lemon juice and parsley.

Add olives, lemon juice and olive oil to skillet when making meat gravy.

Combine tomatoes, olives, currants, olive oil, almonds and vinegar. Serve warm over cooked fish.

Make sauce of shallots, garlic, olives, light raisins, olive oil, vinegar, lemon peel and parsley.

Dress squid with chopped olives, celery, celery leaves, lemon zest, lemon juice, green onion and olive oil.

Make a picadillo of onion, clove, olive oil, ground beef, green olives, raisins, tomato sauce and spicing to taste.

Make appetizer of Manchego cheese, black olives, sweet red peppers, anchovies, olive oil and parsley.

Make a side dish of couscous, broth, olive oil, orange sections, garbanzo beans, green olives, mint leaves and pitted dates.

Make a salad of olive oil, vinegar, honey, cooked frozen edaname, orange sections, green olives and Italian parsley.

Make hamburger patties or meatloaf with olives, cheese, jalapeno pepper and onion.

Make olive soup with white beans, garlic, onion, celery, carrot, pepper, spice to taste, tomato paste, red wine, black olives and lemon juice.

Take a look at a site with presents many interesting olive opportunities. A video worth looking at is: Cooking with Olives.

Marty Martindale

About Marty Martindale

Foodsite Magazine and Marty aim to help the cooking-challenged avoid dependence on others due to lack of cooking knowhow. We concentrate on quick breakfasts, portable lunches and “good-4-u” night meals. With readily available web translation, the magazine explains separate foods, a little of their history, their nutrition, suggested “go-withs,” serving ideas and links to foodsites with recipes.

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