Earthy Delights Recipe

Water-cured Green Olives

Water-cured Green Olives
While curing olives is a lengthy process, it's not particularly difficult. One of the easiest ways is by water curing, a method that requires repeated changes of fresh water to leach out the bitter components of the olives.

These water-cured olives are flavored with lemon, oregano, vinegar, chile peppers and garlic for a decidedly Mediterranean-style taste. You can easily vary the herbs & seasonings to best suit your own personal liking.

5 pounds fresh green olives
1-1/2 quarts water
3 Tbsp salt
2 lemons, sliced into 1/2 inch thick pieces
2 Tbsp dried oregano
2 cups white wine vinegar
1 - 3 dried chile peppers (optional)
6 cloves garlic, peeled and sliced in half lengthwise
Olive oil as needed



Make a long, deep incision along the side of each olive with a sharp paring knife. Place each cut olive immediately into a large container of cold water to prevent browning from oxidation. When all of the olives have been cut, place them in a non-reactive container (stoneware, glass, or porcelain) sufficient to hold them all and cover with cold water. Keep the olives submerged by weighing them down with a plate or a plastic bag filled with water. Place the container in a cool, dark place for at least ten days, draining the water and replacing it with fresh every day.


After the olives have been soaking for 10 days, boil 1-1/2 quarts of water and dissolve the salt in it. Remove from the heat and set aside. Drain and rinse the olives with cold water and return to the container. Cover the olives with the warm salt brine mixture. Mix in the lemon slices, dried oregano, vinegar, garlic, and chiles, if using. Pour in just enough olive oil to form a thin layer on the surface. Store in a cool place for at least two weeks before eating. The olives will keep for at least two months. Refrigerate to extend shelf life.