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Old 09-14-2005, 02:39 PM   #1
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Has anyone tried to make their own olive oil

Olive oil? It seems like you press and crush the olives, then add some water to the pulp, than press out the oli/water mixture, and finally separate the liquid from the oil. Seems easy enough. Has anyone tried this on their own? If I had access to olive trees I'd be all over this one.

Drew

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Old 09-14-2005, 03:54 PM   #2
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The pressure that is required to 'press' olives is immense. They also use 'skirts' or thick mats to help with the filtration. It's not the sort of equipment that one just has to hand in a run-of-the-mill suburban kitchen, even it Italy, Greece or Spain.

I have a small olive tree in my conservatory - it has 7 olives on it - don't think it's worth the effort to press them!
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Old 09-14-2005, 04:08 PM   #3
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7 olives! Sweet. When are you going to try it out???
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Old 09-14-2005, 04:34 PM   #4
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Listen, if you knew what the Scottish climate was like, you would be full of admiration that I managed to grow SEVEN olives!

I've got a friend on the Greek island of Crete - perhaps I'll airfreight them to him, he's got an olive press
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Old 09-14-2005, 04:50 PM   #5
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Yup, airmail to Greece. Well, because they have to be pressed within 48 hours after being picked. I'd bet those Scottish olives would be the tastiest olives ever.
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Old 09-14-2005, 05:01 PM   #6
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Tasty? They'd win a Michelin star, all on their own.

On Greek islands, in Spain and in Tuscany, I've seen the nets spread out below the olive trees, and little old ladies up the trees, stripping those olives which don't fall to the ground. The 'nets' are gathered up and loaded into the oldest lorries I've ever seen and they proceed to the pressing plants... The smell is heavenly. And being able to dip a little local peasant bread into the pressings from your (well, in my case a friends!) own olive oil..... BLISS (even if it still has a fairly 'musky' flavour!)
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Old 09-14-2005, 05:03 PM   #7
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Some day I'll hopefully get to see that. I can only imagine being able to taste the glorious oil right from the press. Sounds fantastic.
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Old 09-14-2005, 05:11 PM   #8
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First pressings are very, very green and very very PUNGENT. I love it.

On Corfu, our friends live in a small village by the sea called St Stefano (Agios Stefano) - all the locals are in a cooperative and they all take their olives to the local press. They mark 'your' batch and you can either watch (as most of the local men do to ensure fair play and honesty) and the wives turn up with local bread, tomatoes, pitted olives from last year and feta and haloumi cheese and local very, very pungent sausages.... wonderful.
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Old 09-14-2005, 06:07 PM   #9
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It's much easier in "theory" to press olives into oil than in practice. As much as I like "homemade from scratch" cooking when I can do it ... I'll buy my olive oil.
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Old 09-15-2005, 05:18 AM   #10
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You're right, Michael... the size of the presses and the thick skirts or pads are required in order for exert the full pressure required to gert 'juice' from those hard untreated olives!
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Old 09-15-2005, 05:45 AM   #11
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Home Olive Oil Press

Oh come on, pressing olives isn't that difficult... Just kidding. I lived in California for a while and LOVED going to my friend's press and seeing that beautiful oil flow...

By the way, anybody with an extra $2500 or so just laying around can get their very own home olive oil press. I just can't see myself ever needing one... weird.

Anyway, I would like to proclaim my astonishment at getting 7 olives in Scotland! I absolutely love Scotland (I grew up in Oregon so the Scottish weather isn't bad either...) and cannot believe you were able to even get those 7. What part of Scotland are you in if you don't mind my asking? My Mother's side is all of the Fraser Clan so Scotland holds a special place in my heart... Someday I'll learn how to play the bagpipes...
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Old 09-15-2005, 06:28 AM   #12
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I grow a small olive tree in my conservatory, which faces south. I also have very high, dry stone walls all round the property which are from 1840 ish. The central heating in the winter and glass walls in the summer all help to nurture an orange, a lemon and an olive tree. I'm aiming for the Orangery effect!

I'm from Edinburgh, although my Dad's family are from the Highlands.
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