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An Ode to Olives

The Olives Home Page

Family: Oleacea
Genus: Olea
Commercially Important Species: Olea europaea L.

I confess: I love olives. I can't eat pizza without them, and am often teased by my friends about this. In order to teach them a few things about olives, I have put together this homepage.

When I was a kid my mom used to put olives on almost everything. In salads, on pizza, pasta, chicken, etc. In those days we used to eat black olives a lot, before they got a bad name for high fat content. I never ate green olives. For some reason, those little pimentos peeking out of them put me off.

But then, many years later, I visited Morocco, where I was first introduced to the glorious green olive. At a market in Casablanca, I found a vendor selling dozens of different kinds of olives! What heaven! Each type was made with a different type of vinegar, spices or mixed with different vegetables, including small onions or even little pickled carrots. I was hooked. Now, I no longer discriminate between olives based on color, and in fact, I prefer the variety of green olives. However, I later learned, green olives are actually the unripe fruit of the olive tree, so they are really the same thing.


All About Olives
Curing Olives
Olive Oil
Books About Olives
Olives & Olive Gadgets
Martini Madness Shop
Recipes with Olives
OliveLovers Yahoo Group

All About Olives

Olive Oil

Curing Olives

Recipes using Olives

Marinated Olives

Late Night Olives -- recipe and confessions of another olive lover
Olive Garland Bread - great for the holidays!
Goat Cheese and Scallion Ravioli with Black Olive Pesto
Olive Profumate (Fennel & Orange-Scented Olives)
Postrio's Roasted Rack of Lamb with Black Olive Sauce
Italian Olive Bread
Grill Black Olive and Rosemary Focaccia
Red Pepper Fettuccine with Tuna and Black Olives
Chicken Tagine with Olives and Preserved Lemons
Swordfish with Olives and Capers
Grilled Pepper and Black Olive Relish
Olives Baked in Red Wine
Mid-Eastern Recipes
Black Olive Tapenade with Garlic Toasts
Grilled Tuna Skewers With Tomato-Black Olive Relish
Aceitunas a la Sevillana (Spanish Marinated Olive Tapas)
Fettuccine with Shellfish, Tomatoes and Olives
Recipes from Australia!

Books About Olives

Help support the Olive Pages by shopping for your olive and martini books here. Money earned from Amazon sales pays to keep this website running. Thanks for helping us out!

They'll even gift wrap them if you want to send them as a gift to your favourite olive lover!

    Olives : The Life and Lore of a Noble Fruit; Mort Rosenblum; Hardcover

    Who ever thought olives would make such compelling reading? But Rosenblum's research into the science and art of olive growing, pressing, and pickling has made for one of the dark-horse reference gems of the year. Olives: The Life and Lore of a Noble Fruit discusses traditional slow cold pressing versus using hot water for speed, the distinctions between Moroccan, Italian, Israeli, and Californian olives, the beauty and grandeur of the trees, and the gnarled, hardy wisdom of people who've lived by the olive all their lives, Rosenblum has produced an extraordinarily entertaining, appealing, and readable tome.

    Pruning and Training Systems for Modern Olive Growing by Riccardo Gucci

    Pruning and Training Systems for Modern Olive Growing summarises the most up-to-date information available on current pruning techniques and training systems. It specifically addresses the problems faced by growers, professionals and students who are new to olive growing and provides information previously not available in English.


    Saffron, Garlic & Olives -- What better companion for the beloved olive than the most exotic of spices???

    Simple & healthful recipes featuring the beloved and specialized culinary ingredients saffron, garlic and olives. 97 recipes are divided evenly among saffron, garlic and olives-connoting a wonderfully self-indulgent eating experience, the sensuous tastes, rich colors and earthy aromas of Mediterranean cooking.

    The recipes are fast and easy, often familiar-but with an intriguing twist. Samples:

    • Olive Recipes: Tapenade; Olive and Rosemary Focaccia; Risotto with Prosciutto, Lemon and Olives; Fish Fillets Baked on Crisp Potatoes with Garlic and Olives; Potato Salad with Olives, Capers and Herbs; 
    • Saffron Recipes: Saffron Gougere, Rice with Cheese, Saffron and Herbs; Butterflied Garlic Prawns with Saffron; Roast Lemon Chicken with Saffron Sauce.


    Extra Virgin: An Australian Companion to Olives and Olive Oil; by Karen Reichelt and Michael Burr

    Feast of the OliveFeast of the Olive : Cooking With Olives and Olive Oil;
    Maggie Blyth Klein, Mary Rich (Illustrator); Paperback

    Olive Oil: From Tree to Table; by Peggy Knickerbocker, Laurie Smith (Photographer), Maggie Blyth Klein (Contributor) ; Hardback

    Olive OilFrom the first photograph of a gnarled olive tree with its cloud of silvery leaves, t his book is transporting. Peggy Knickerbocker's special mission in OLIVE OlL: FROM TREE TO TABLE is to introduce readers to 'an olive oil culture' and her pleasure in it. The book may well inspire you to become more of a culinary connoisseur in this department, especially as it is possible to put together good dishes very simply with that golden liquid.

    coverThe Olives Table -- Todd English is articulate about how he cooks. His food is uniquely Mediterranean, muscular and sophisticated; he describes it as "refined rustic." His purpose in The Olives Table is to show home cooks how to make simple Mediterranean ingredients "more interesting, more elaborate, more fun." These ingredients include lobster and foie gras, as well as fresh figs, artichokes, and other seasonal foods. Many dishes are elaborate show stoppers, as in Asparagus Risotto with Ragu of Crazy Mushrooms, Porcini Cream, and White Truffles, or time-consuming: Free-Form Tuscan-Style Rabbit Lasagne that you would more likely want to travel to Cambridge to enjoy. But also look for tempting, simpler dishes you can easily make, provided you have access to impeccable, fresh ingredients like tuna and local, vine-ripened tomatoes. Look, too, for Chocolate Risotto.

    The Essential Olive Oil Companion : 100 Recipes, Varieties Histories, Cultivation; Anne Dolamore; Paperback

    Flavored Oils : 50 Recipes for Cooking With Infused Oils; Michael Chiarello, et al; Paperback

    Flavored Oils

        Synopsis: This practical cookbook reveals how oils enhanced with the essence of herbs, spices, fruits and vegetables captured at their peak can add a gourmet touch to practically any dish. Low in saturated fats and easy to use, flavored oils make healthful alternatives to mayonnaises and sauces in everything from marinades and vinaigrettes to appetizers and entrees. 24 color photos.

    Lost Arts : A Cook's Guide to Making Vinegar, Curing Olives, Crafting Fresh Goat Cheese and Simple Mustards, Baking Bread and Growing Herbs ; by Lynn Alley

    The Low-Cholesterol Olive Oil Cookbook : More Than 200 Recipes; Sarah Schlesinger, et al; Paperback

    The Olive Oil Cookbook; Louise Pickford; Hardcover

    Olive Oil Cookbook

        Synopsis: Celebrates the versatility of olive oil with a delicious array of international dishes, many with a Mediterranean influence, that include Soupe de Poisson, New England Crab Cakes, Souvlaki, Baked Red Peppers with Mushrooms, and Stuffed Artichokes.

    Olive Oil Cookery : The Mediterranean Diet; Maher A. Abbas, et al; Paperback

        Maher A. Abbas, M.D., is a graduate of Stanford University School of Medicine and is currently a physician with the Mayo Clinic. He is the author of three health cookbooks, a weight loss book, and a novel. The Mediterranean Diet: Olive Oil Cookery is the first health cookbook to offer a complete overview of the subject. A comprehensive review of the science behind the miraculous and curative effect of olive oil is included. Information on how to choose which olive oil and how to cook with it is shared with the reader. Over 150 simple but delicious recipes are included. >

    Olives: Cooking With Olives and Their Oils; Ford Rogers; Paperback

See more of my favourite cook books in Naomi's Bookshelf

Other Olive Products!

Other Olives on the Web

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All text and photographs Copyright 1995-2009 Naomi S. Smith