In the fullness of time, all those who have olive trees are preparing to harvest the first crop of fresh olive oil, the liquid gold from Greece's sacred tree. Some olives harvested before they mature to the stage that is suitable for the production of edible olives. At this stage, they are very bitter with a green astringent taste and very crunchy. Those primitive, not gastronomic characteristics always make us wonder how at 600 BC when the first olives tree cultivate for the first time in Europe by the early Greek civilization transformed into a tasty, spicy, crispy delicacy.
The answer is hiding into the tradition, and it has a name, but first thing first.
The olives in the tree are still green but fleshy, are not ready for making olive oil but for making pickled olives are pretty good even if they're not initially for table use. What we need is patience to harvest and to pick out the olives from the trees.
Next step is to take out the bitterness by the method of osmosis. The olive's surface is made up of cells that are too close to each other to leave no gaps between them. This anatomy makes difficult the osmosis process because among other things is interrupted by a few freckles through which the fruit breathes and may, if the proper conditions are not formed, become infected by pathogenic microorganisms. That's why we crack the skin lightly to make the procedure faster and safer.
To extract the oleuropein responsible substance for olives bitterness, we submerge the cracked olives to the sea for about four to five days.
The blessing to inhabit a country with the vast blue sea is perhaps the answer to the question about how it was created the first edible olives.
The olives now have no bitter taste, but slightly salty and green flavour.
Sugars such as glucose, fructose, mannose, lactose and sucrose are present at the flesh of the olives; those ingredients are an asset, initiate the fermentation, during fermentation these ingredients transforming into lactic acid protecting the olives along with the brine and the absence of air.
We keep using clarifying seawater for the brine, and we also add lemon as we ascertain that keeps the olives crispy with a discreet lemony fragrance. The fermentation needs about a month to finish; we transfer the olives in a new brine always by clarifying seawater, or we just sprinkle them with dust of salty, aromatic plants.