To prepare those who have or are interested in curing their own olives, we have provided the following information to help you do so.
EQUIPMENT: Use wood, glass, stoneware, or heavy, light-colored plastic containers. DO NOT USE glavanized or aluminum containers. Stirring utensils should be stainless steel or wood.
Be sure olives are completely covered by solution during all stages of curing. Exposure to air darkens olives.
- Soak 12 hours in lye solution - 4 tablespoons lye in one gallon cold water. (Solution should not be over 65 to 70 degrees Farenheit before adding olives.) Stir occasionally.
- Drain and soak 12 more hours in fresh lye solution. Cut into a large olive - lye will change the flesh to a yellow-green color, penetrating to the pit.
- If the lye has not penetrated to the pit, soak an additional 12 hours in a fresh lye solution.
- Rinse in cold water.
- Soak 6 hours in fresh, cold water.
- Cover with salt brine - 6 tablespoons salt per gallon of water. Let stand 2 days. Refrigerate and use within two weeks. To keep longer than two weeks, follow the next 3 steps or process in a pressure canner.
- Cover with salt brine - 13 tablespoons salt per gallon of water. Store 1 week.
- Cover with fresh salt brine - 1 pound or 1 2/3 cups salt per gallon of water. Let stand 10 to 12 days.
- Cover with fresh brine - 1 pound or 1 2/3 cups salt per gallon of water. Store in a cool place, preferably a refrigerator.
- If, at any time, the olives become soft or bad smelling. DO NOT EAT OR EVEN TASTE THEM.
- Mold or scum mar form on the brine. Skim off as soon as it appears. If the mold growth is heavy, destroy the olives.
- Olives are a low-acid food and require careful handling to prevent botulism. Olives MUST be canned in a pressure canner. The complete directions for canning are in Home Pickling of Olives.Try these links as well for more in formation about canning. Click here and/or here.