Double posting madness, Part 1…

As you may remember me mentioning a few weeks ago (he says, confidently assuming people read AND remember everything he types on here) we went to my relative’s farm in rural NSW for the weekend. This provided us with many ‘firsts’, most notably being Dani’s first chance to pick up and hold a week old lamb in a paddock, after jumping from the back of a ute to open a gate. So very chic.

The second ‘first’ of the weekend was the chance for us to get our hands on a few kilos of freshly picked Kalamata olives, straight from the tree, for free! There are a wide variety of trees on my uncle’s land, and it just so happens that he planted a few olive trees back in the day for shade… and now they’re bearing fruit in large amounts.

So, Dani being the true italo-australian she is, grabbed a bag and spent half an hour stripping the tree bear of every juicy olive on there.

I’m aware that some of these are green/black/not kalamata…
there was a second tree that we grabbed some from for a sample of what they’ll taste like

We brought them home and decided to f0llow the pickling recipe that we picked up from the “Rose Creek Estate” – a small traditional Italian farm, that is suprisingly nestled in the heart of Keilor. Bizarre, I know, but they had some of the best olives i’ve ever tasted and were handing out the recipe to anyone who asked.

So,  following the recipe, we soaked the olives in fresh water, changing it each day, for 10 days.
This process seemed to leach most of the bitterness from the fruits (and boy were they bitter at the start), I’m guessing by replacing the water content that was provided by the tree, with fresh, less bitter water?

After that, we made a brine of 100g of salt to 1 litre of water, which is salty, i tasted it, it was salty.

Then its just a matter of popping all the olives in sterilised (boiling water rinsed) jars, with garlic, lemon slices, some oregano and chilli, and filling em up with brine.

Of course I underestimated how many jars we’d need, so now we have some odd sizes here and there, but you get the idea.

These now sit in a dark area for 6 – 8 weeks to get fully salt-ified, and then its just a matter of eating them all.

We are planning the annual salami making day this year to be in July, so by the time the olives are cured, the salami will be good to go, and August is looking like it will be antipasti central around here!

** We will be sending out invites to people who have expressed a genuine interest in learning the salami tricks over the last year for a special Sunday session where you make your own and pick them up later on, so if you are reading this and are all “damn, i wish i could make salami” then email us and we’ll invite you along! **