SKU: 8719


Fratepietro Bella de Cerignola Green Olives in Brine

330 gram jar - Cerignola, Italy

Olives are old. Cultivated olive trees spread from Asia Minor to the Mediterranean basin 6,000 years ago and predate written language.

Many of us grew up knowing olives by color or by whether they were pitted or stuffed. We knew them as this delicious, soft vegetable placed on salads or pizza.

As our culinary knowledge has expanded, we have learned that olives, by the time they arrive in the palm of our hands, come in many colors. These colors are based in part on when they are plucked from the tree: green is sooner, black is later or riper. Riper is not better, just different.

There is no such thing as a green olive tree - or a black one for that matter. Like humans, olives all start the same, with the same structure; they just look different when they ripen, and depending on the brining, they taste different too.

And then there is variety. The big four - green, black, pitted, and stuffed - are not varieties. In fact, there are over 2,000 varieties of olives grown in warm climates around the world.

We have learned that the mighty olive is a drupe, a fruit (not a vegetable) with a single pit, like a peach or a cherry.

Unlike their sweet brethren, olives contain a compound called oleuropein. This is the bitterness that fills the olive. Olives off the tree are not filled with joy; instead, they are filled with bitterness from the oleuropein.

To achieve the desirable love you know, you have to cure them, a fermentation of sorts.

Curing removes the yucky taste of oleuropein and phenols from the olives, resulting in quite a tasty treat!

Understanding the curing process may result in knowing which olives you prefer. The curing of olives can happen in the sun, in salt, in lye, water, or brine. Lye is the fastest and water takes the longest, and brine-curing can take up to a year.

In the end, olives should never be mushy; soft can be okay, firm is good, and color will vary. Stuffed olives are delicious and have a dedicated shaken and stirred following.

These large green Italian olives are from Cerignola, Italy and have recently become incredibly popular! They are big and beautiful! If you have a small mouth, you might have to bite off a little at a time. The pit itself is as big as some olives. The saltiness of the brine and soft, firm flesh is delicious and satisfying, so much so that one olive, plus sucking on the pit, lasts longer and is more satisfying than a bag of potato chips!

This is one of my all-time favorite olives. The big, mouth-filling olive is firm, with a great crunch, lots of meat to eat, and just the right brine; they are soooo good! Get some giant green olives here!