Table Olives – Picking & Sorting

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Sunday 16 November, 2014 by Uncle Spike

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Picking olives for oil production is one thing, but for table olives, that is, the ones you want to eat and present at your breakfast table, it’s another ball-game all together. Picking for olive oil production requires zero finesse, and olives of any colour or condition (apart from a sloppy mouldy sludge), can be used. But you wouldn’t want that served at your table, now would you?

First of all, for table olives, I only ever pick them one by one, by hand. I also place them in tubs right where I am up in the tree, and never throw them down into a bucket. Bruising them is very easy and they discolour quickly.

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Second job is to ensure that only the A Grade ones are kept. Any that have been visited by a passing bug, are damaged or blemished are rejected. But no great loss, they go into the pile for oil production.

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I then remove any stems that are still in place – you don’t want them served to your guests!

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Finally, even though I don’t spray our crops, I wash all the olives before starting the processing stage. 

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Next I plan to get a couple of posts up together to explain the different types of processing we apply in preparing, curing and preserving our table olives. Watch this space…

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19 thoughts on “Table Olives – Picking & Sorting

  1. […] a previous post, we looked at how olives for table use, rather than oil production, are picked, sorted and […]

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  2. kcinaz says:

    I have olive trees lining the street outside my property and I tried to preserve the olvies with a salt pack. I would love to learn how you preserve using your olive method and give it a try. If I have to endure the allergies from the little buggers the least I could do is enjoy eating them too. My first batch several years ago was a failure! Please share more!

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  3. Mei-Mei says:

    Oh I am very excited for these posts because olives are one of my favorite foods. I had such good ones in Spain, and I’m sure yours are great, too!

    Liked by 1 person

  4. dayphoto says:

    I loved this post! I’m enjoying learning all the neat things that you do and how you prepare your food. I love Olives so this really interesting!

    Linda
    http://coloradofarmlife.wordpress.com/?s=The+Adventures+of+Fuzzy+and+Boomer&submit=Search
    http://coloradofarmlife.wordpress.com

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  5. Sue Slaght says:

    Very much looking forward to the process of how they get to the table Spike. Then the question is how do we get them to Canada? 🙂

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  6. lamputts says:

    Really looking forward to reading about the curing side, something I’ve always wondered about but never actually done anything to find out. Now I’ll wait for the blog 🙂

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  7. I learned something here…thanks for sharing.

    Liked by 1 person

  8. Like Vothikhanhhoa has said, I have never seen an olive tree except on screen; but I know about olives. Let me say ‘thank you’ to the hardworking people of Spain, Turkey and the other olive-producing countries for the delicious olives they give the world. I enjoy them especially at parties. Thank you Uncle Spike for your site. I have spent a good time here.I promise to be nice and generous when you come for the second leg of the match (return visit).Best regards.

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  9. I got a fascination for olives when I started to travel in Spain. I was staggered at just how many trees there were. Spain is responsible for 45% of the world’s olives. Turkey has an estimated 250 million olive trees or 3 trees for every person.
    Who owns the trees that grow in the pavements. I saw some of these in Altinkum including one that was being enthusiastically harvested and was producing a surprisingly bumper crop!

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  10. I have never seen an olive tree in my life. The olive harvest is awesome, I love to see the way you collect them and then sorting them to ensure the best quality. Thanks for sharing such an interesting post ❤

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