Prepare your olives using the drying method

Much faster and easier than the preparation in brine, the drying method can be practiced on black olives. Ideal for eliminating bitterness, this technique will allow you to prepare your olives for table consumption as well as to transform them into oil.

black olives
Dried black olives

When should you pick up olives for drying?

The pickup black olives intervenes according to the species, some being earlier than others. Region and climate also affect harvest time.

For the drying method, olives at least veraison (turning from green to purple), fully ripe (totally black) or extra-ripe (slightly withered and starting to fall) can be used. This harvest takes place between October and December. according to these parameters.

How to harvest olives?

There are several techniques for home gardeners growing an olive tree at home:

  • manual picking allows to pick the fruits at full maturity directly from the tree;

  • combing with large rakes specific is faster but does not really allow you to select the olives, just like beating;

  • picking up once the olives have fallen naturally in a filet involves sorting to remove moldy or badly damaged fruit.

How to dry olives?

The simplest method is to spread the olives in an openwork crate plastic and place them in a dry place, in the sun or in the shade.

The olives will need to be stirred often to create good ventilation. Take advantage of this step to remove any moldy fruit.

Shaking also helps get rid of olive worms if your tree is affected by the olive fly. The worms will emerge from the fruit as it dries. When shaking, collect them on a piece of newspaper and offer them to the birds in the garden!

Once the olives are hard and wrinkled, the drying will be complete and the olives will have lost their bitternessall that remains is rehydrate them for 12 hours in water at room temperature before preparing them with the herbs of your choice, you can also make a delicious oil with a very significant reduction in margines.

Note that if you have an oven or better yet, a dehydrator, you can dry your olives, however this does not exempt you from a soaking period of at least 3 days before putting them out to dry.

In the dehydrator as in the oven, the olives must first be cut into rings and therefore pitted. Then set the temperature of the dehydrator to 50°C or the oven to 60°C, then leave to dry between 4 and 8 hours, checking often.

To know more about drying olives in the sun

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Source: Au Jardin, conseils en jardinage by

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