Seasoning my Arbequina Olives

My Arbequina Olive Project met an unexpected acceleration. Marta, our friend that gifted me the arbequina olives had been reading my previous olive post and sent me some smoke signals. Seeing that they are from her tree, and she’s had the tree for 10 years, I immediately changed my olive curing plans to put her wisdom into practice.

I hope she doesn’t mind me sharing this story in a couple of lines. She got the olive tree as a gift she and her husband decided to present to themselves when their daughter was born 10 years ago. What a beautiful idea.

I was a bit concerned that some of my olives where beginning to get some brown spots. She assured that it’s normal, her arbequina olives do the same.

The big news was that I don’t need to soak them and change the water for 4-8 weeks. Only about 9 days are fine. This was brilliant news for me, because I have to go and spend a long week in Madrid and I didn’t fancy giving instructions to Mr. H. to change the water every couple of days. This is only because my pride makes me stubborn so I don’t like asking for help.

Feeling in a Beatles revival mood, I set about seasoning the olives this weekend while listening to The Beatles. I divided them into 3 smaller jars, dressed them in brine, made three flavours and topped them with extra-virgin olive oil. The herbs I used were freshly taken from my pot plants.

Lemon and garlic

Thyme and rosemary

Rosemary

Garlic cloves

Coriander seeds

Lime

Straying off the subject for a moment, the days are getting shorter here. Luckily the weather is still lovely here, as I’m not looking forward to the chilliness of winter at all. However, as I have less daylight the photos are now becoming darker. I really did not feel like editing them to pretend all was bright. I thought it would be nice to reflect the reality of the scenes. What do you think?

Arbequina olives with coriander and lime

As preparation, first sterilise the jars. Rinse the herbs, lemons, lime and olives. To make the brine, dissolve a bit of non-iodised salt in some water and heat it up without fully bringing it to boil. All the amounts are approximate, as usual. The olives are enough to fill a jar. The rest sort of depends on how much you feel like putting in the jar.

Arbequina olives with thyme

Olives

Thyme, Lemon and Garlic Arbequina Olives

Ingredients:

1 bunch thyme, 1 clove garlic, 1/2 lemon, arbequina olives, salt, black pepper, water, extra-vrigin olive oil

Place the olives in the sterilized jar. Add the thyme and peeled garlic. Cut the lemon peel and add some lemon zest. Squeeze some lemon juice into the jar. Freshly grind some black pepper on top. Add a bit of brine. Mix the ingredients around a little. Pour some extra-virgin olive oil liberally to cover all the ingredients. Close the jar tightly and store in a cool dry place.

Rosemary and lemon olives

Rosemary lemon olives

Rosemary, Lemon and Garlic Arbequina Olives

This is sort of cheating because it’s exactly like the previous recipe, only that instead of fresh thyme I used fresh rosemary.

Ingredients:

1 bunch rosemary, 1 clove garlic, 1/2 lemon, arbequina olives, salt, black pepper, water, extra-vrigin olive oil

Place the olives in the sterilized jar. Add the rosemary and peeled garlic. Cut the lemon peel and add some lemon zest. Squeeze some lemon juice into the jar. Freshly grind some black pepper on top. Add a bit of brine. Mix the ingredients around a little. Pour some extra-virgin olive oil liberally to cover all the ingredients. Close the jar tightly and store in a cool dry place.

Coriander and lime olives

Dressing arbequina olives

Coriander Seed and Lime Arbequina Olives

Ingredients:

1/2 tablespoon coriander seeds, 1/2 lime, arbequina olives, salt, black pepper, water, extra-vrigin olive oil

Place the olives in the sterilized jar. Crush the coriander seeds and add to the jar. Cut the lime peel and add some lime zest. Squeeze some lime juice into the jar. Freshly grind some black pepper on top. Add a bit of brine. Mix the ingredients around a little. Pour some extra-virgin olive oil liberally to cover all the ingredients. Close the jar tightly and store in a cool dry place.

Thank you for reading!

39 Comments

    1. Sofia 2014-10-13 at 22:38

      Now that’s a hard one. Amongst them are: While my Guitar Gently Weeps, In my Life, The Ballad of John and Yoko (only because of its melody)… How about you?

      Reply
      1. pianolearner 2014-10-15 at 18:06

        It has to be The Long and Winding road, Eleanor Rigby and The Fool on the Hill . Like you I also really like While my Guitar Gently weeps. I really dislike I am the Walrus!

        Reply
        1. Sofia 2014-10-19 at 19:08

          Good choices! I don’t really like I am the Walrus either…

          Reply
  1. Sunny 2014-10-13 at 22:20

    Aww that’s such a beautiful story! I know some people buy wine and store it in the cellar for the kid when he/she is born, but an olive tree is so much better 🙂

    Also, you and Dr. D can be friends. He is HARDCORE into the Beatles!

    Silly question: so when can you eat these? LOL

    Reply
    1. Sofia 2014-10-13 at 22:45

      It is beautiful 🙂 Oh cool, I hope you dont mind the Beatles then!
      Ok when can I eat them? Technically I believe tomorrow but I don’t plan to try them till I get back from Madrid…

      Reply
    2. Sofia 2014-10-13 at 22:47

      PS I was going to add chili to the coriander one for some spiciness, but thought I’d save that experiment in case I do it again in a more advanced manner. I thought I’d keep it simple for now.

      Reply
      1. Sunny 2014-10-14 at 00:41

        Nope I don’t. I am very used to it by now 😉

        It might be a good idea to wait a few more days just to make sure the flavor has the time to sink in? I can’t wait to hear how they turn out!

        Reply
  2. Bunny Eats Design 2014-10-13 at 22:42

    The flavourings sound lovely and it’s a great idea to glean some wisdom from your friend. Enjoy your time and Madrid with olives to come home to. 9 days is nice and short, especially when you won’t be around anyway 🙂

    Reply
    1. Sofia 2014-10-13 at 22:49

      These olives are a variety that are really small in size so apparently they are quicker to do. Have a great week Genie! xx

      Reply
  3. Amanda 2014-10-13 at 22:50

    Your photos are gorgeous. What a beautiful idea, a gifted olive tree. When I was born my dad gave my mom a plant that still grows in their house. It’s a tree bigger than I am. So cool. Can’t wait to hear how these gorgeous beauties turn out!

    Reply
    1. Sofia 2014-10-13 at 22:55

      Beautiful too of your parents, what type of tree is it?
      I too can’t wait to see how the olives turn out, and at the same time I’m dreading it just in case I did something drastically wrong as it’s my first time. Hey all the ingredients are gorgeous and fresh so it can’t be too bad!

      Reply
      1. Amanda 2014-10-13 at 22:57

        I”m sure you did just fine! The plant is called a schefflera plant. It has big fans as leaves. 🙂

        Reply
        1. Sofia 2014-10-13 at 23:01

          Just looked up the plant in google 😉 It’s pretty!

          Reply
  4. Patty Nguyen 2014-10-14 at 04:01

    I love that top shot, Sofia! You are so good with that camera!

    Reply
    1. Sofia 2014-10-14 at 08:38

      You’re so sweet Patty 🙂

      Reply
  5. Pecora Nera 2014-10-14 at 11:18

    Fabulous recipe and great photos. I will pass this on to Mrs Sensible. I prefer making limoncello, I found a great recipe for rum toff, A jar, lots of fruit and lots of alcohol plus sugar….. Fun to make and even more fun to drink.

    Reply
    1. Sofia 2014-10-14 at 11:29

      Limoncello!!! You make that? Gasp, I shall have to get the recipe from you… Rum toff. Sounds like you make very fun drinks 🙂

      Reply
      1. Pecora Nera 2014-10-14 at 11:50

        I will do a post on how to make it. It is very easy

        Reply
        1. Sofia 2014-10-14 at 11:53

          I can’t wait! In case I’m busy the day it’s published and away from WP, be sure to poke me somehow, I must see it.

          Reply
  6. Marta 2014-10-14 at 15:43

    Hi Sofia!!! Espectacular photos!!!Very Beautiful, really.
    We did the same like you this weekend. We have done 2 different rècipes. The first one like yours and the second with lime and fresh coriander, so let’s see what happen. We save the smaller jars inside the cupboard without any light during 4 months. Then you can open the first pot and see if it’s ready to eat. I’m sure that 4 months will be enough.
    Good luck Sofia!!!

    Reply
    1. Sofia 2014-10-14 at 15:50

      Bon dia Marta! Moltes gracies 🙂 4 months is an awful long time to wait… That’s so nice that we have done similar recipes 🙂 I’ll let you know how they get on. Sort tambe, petonets

      Reply
  7. Guillermina Stover 2014-10-14 at 16:50

    First of all, the photos are fabulous, as usual, Sofia! And I am enjoying the autumn weather here on the Texas/Mexico border, too…I ADORE fall, my favorite time of year. Probably because October is my birth month. In fact, today is my BIRTHday…SIXTY-THREE!!! I laughed out loud when you mention that your “my pride makes you stubborn so I don’t like asking for help”–I am the same! Too damned independent, I think. Brining your olives looks divine, I am green with envy!

    Reply
    1. Sofia 2014-10-14 at 17:44

      Felicidades! Happy Birthday Guillermina! I did see some photos of a great way to celebrate it, wink wink. Last year my birthday celebration was also fun as, like you, it also coincided with my cousins wedding. Your birthday “month”, does this mean you plan to celebrate and have a grand time for the whole month? I hope so 🙂

      Reply
  8. Liz 2014-10-15 at 07:21

    such beauty! And love the Beatles. Bungalow Bill always cracks me up 🙂

    Reply
  9. milkandbun 2014-10-15 at 15:30

    Love the post! Needless to say, that photo are wonderful, beautiful! 🙂

    Reply
  10. dedy oktavianus pardede 2014-10-16 at 23:26

    kinda funny thou, i had a mango tree in the backyard of my house too that planted next to my plasenta by my dad once i was born…..

    Reply
    1. Sofia 2014-10-19 at 19:06

      Thats really nice too! Do you get to eat the fruit from that mango tree?

      Reply
  11. Baking With Gab 2014-10-18 at 06:39

    All of those seasonings – yummmm! Love the moody lighting in the photos 🙂

    Reply
    1. Sofia 2014-10-19 at 19:06

      Oh thanks about the lighting, I suppose I’ll have to do more like that now that winter will be approaching! xx

      Reply
  12. Mabel Kwong 2014-10-19 at 13:03

    I love olives, all sorts. Though my favourite are the black ones. They always give a bland meal some zing. Didn’t know you were a Beatles fan. I’ve always meant to check out their music but never have. I am lazy that way. Hope you’re well, Sofia. Stay warm 🙂

    Reply
    1. Sofia 2014-10-19 at 19:07

      You should check them out Mabel 🙂 I hope you are well too!

      Reply
  13. Dalo 2013 2014-11-01 at 05:25

    Great photos, such interesting perspectives on your shots ~ and then you discuss the Beatles as well, so another perfect post from you. What is also very cool are that your herbs are all grown by your plants, I think that adds something really personal so that much better. Cheers!

    Reply
    1. Sofia 2014-11-02 at 00:47

      What song do you like from the Beatles? Yeah, I love having my own herbs in pot plants, its way more personal and makes the food so much more aromatic!

      Reply
      1. Dalo 2013 2014-11-04 at 04:05

        Good question, so many songs. I would choose any song from their White Album (although Revolution #9 is my absolutely least favorite song of theirs). Her Majesty I like a lot as I use to be able to play it on the guitar and sing it (it is a very simple/short song…yet so perfect too).

        Agree with home grown veggies & herbs…much better for you too!

        Reply
        1. Sofia 2014-11-04 at 08:44

          Hey I didnt know you play the guitar 🙂 singing at the same time is hard – or it is for me anyway. But great fun too!

          Reply
          1. Dalo 2013 2014-11-07 at 03:33

            No, I do not play…just remembered several chords and practiced one song 🙂 Love music, but just can’t play…so appreciate those who do!

            Reply

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