I know that many people are on the fence about olives. Maybe they like only black olives, the ultra ripe ones in a can, or they refuse to even touch an olive that still contains a pit. Or they just avoid them all together. I love olives. All kinds. Never met one I didn't like. And I've liked them my entire life. I remember that my dad would give me the Spanish olives out of gin martinis when I was a kid. (Yes, you read that correctly.) To this day, I still adore olives soaked in gin. I keep meaning to buy a little thing of it and replace the olive juice in the jar with Tanqueray. The Kroger that we usually visit has seriously stepped up their deli game. They now have an amazing Mediterranean bar (and cheese case <3) that includes, like, 15 different varieties of olives. I was in heaven when I found this out. I could have spent hours there sneaking bites of those little briny fruits.
What caught my eye as new and special (in my life, at least.) were the Moroccan dry-cured olives. They are a little salty, but really fruity and mild. I think that these olives could convert olive-haters. The flesh is velvety, smooth, and rich. And, because they are not brined, don't have that brackish, tangy bite which many olives do. I had to put these in my chopped olive salad/topping. I snatched up a half pint along with a pint of the Greek olive mix that had Kalamatas, Nafplions, Amfissas, and several other varieties.
TIP: If for some reason you have an olive pitter in your house, great. If you don't, the easiest way to pit olives, in my opinion, is to score one side down to the pit, the using the flat of your knife blade, crush it, as if you were crushing a garlic clove. The pit should pop right out.
Chopped Olive Salad feat. Moroccan Dry-Cured Olives
1 C chopped Greek olive mix
1/2 C chopped dry-cured olives
1/2 of a large roasted red pepper, chopped
2 Tbsp of the Greek olive brine
1 tsp minced garlic
Combine ingredients. (It just gets better as it sits, so make it a couple days in advance.)