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Olives

are the small oval fruit of the olive tree. The fruit ripens from green to black; the flesh encloses an oval stone and is the source of olive oil - the fruit stoned or stuffed is used as an appetiser and as a flavouring and ingredient in dishes. Originating in the eEast the Olive was consumed by both the ancient Egytians and Greeks and was spread in its cultivation to all Mediterranean regions by the Romans. More recently the low level of saturated fat has made the olive more popular as a healthy and tastier alternative to other vegetable oils. There are two basic types of olive green and black (ripe). Green olives are harvested before they ripen and treated with an alkali to reduce the bitterness the rinsed and pickled in brine.Black Olives are harvested when fully ripe and are not treated with alkali but are still pickled in brine
Last modified: 12 April 2009
Editors: Nik D
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