Choose olives that are deep red to dark red. Slash each olive on one side with a sharp blade like a utility knife. Place the slashed olives in a one quart jar. Make a solution of  30 grams (2T) of kosher salt dissolved in one pint of water, and pour the solution over the olives to immerse them. Store in a cool place, changing the solution every week for three weeks. If a scum forms on the surface, disregard it until it is time to change the water again, then remove the scum and rinse the olives in fresh water before covering with brine again.  The scum is harmless.

At the end of three weeks, taste a couple of olives. If they are only slightly bitter (these olives should be left with a bit of tang), pour off the brine, rinse the olives. If they are too bitter, rebrine for another week, then rinse. Add to the jar of olives 2 lemon wedges and a clove of skinned garlic.

Mix these ingredients for one quart of olives:

¾ cup of white wine vinegar

16 grams kosher salt

1 ¾ Cups Water

Dissolve the salt in water and vinegar and pour over olives to cover but leave a little room at the top of the jar to float a layer of olive oil about ¼ inch thick. These olives will be ready to eat after marinating for a few days. Store in a cool, dark place. If kept too long, the lemon and vinegar flavors will predominate, so try to eat this within a couple of months after they are ready. I still like them several months afterwards too!


Recipe by Maggie Blyth Klein

The Feast of the Olive 1994