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Jun 17, 2009 07:17 AM

Can you freeze olives?

I am an olive fanatic. Love all types, green, black, oil cured, stuffed with anything, fresh bright green to very spicy. Problem is I live in northern Michigan where their idea of an olive bar is three vats--green with pimento, canned black, and Kalamata. Because of this my wife and I make trips 2 or 3 times a year to various stores around the Detroit metro area--Salvagios, Papa Joes, Whole Foods, etc. and once a year to my olive mecca--Jungle Jims in Cinnci to load up.

Problem is if I fill my tubs with drained olives many varieties grow fuzzy in the fridge after 6-8 weeks. And it grinds me to pay $8-12/pound to fill the tubs with brine. (I use some brine for dressings and marinades but always throw out a lot). I was wondering if I can freeze drained olives Do you think they would hold their firmness and flavor? I go through 4-5 pounds a month (no lectures about sodium intake please :-)

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  1. Why not just fill your containers with brine after you get home?

    3 Replies
    1. re: danieljdwyer

      I found a link for Seville Imports:
      They offer suggestions..

      1. re: danieljdwyer

        I believe adding my own brine (salt & water) would leech out the flavorings that make each olive unique. Some I get are flavored with different curries. Others are in dill and oregano or a huge mix of Mediterranean spices. Some are quite hot and spicy and my wife's favorites are the huge, crisp cerignolas that are hardly brined at all--sorta like half sour pickles. Also, I afraid fresh brine might ruin the flavors of all the various stuffed olives I get.

        1. re: Goldendog

          Well, if you freeze them, you're going to have to cover them in liquid anyway. You can use olive oil if you don't want to use brine. I cure my own olives twice a year (green in the late summer, black in the late fall) and they last me all year with no need to freeze. The jars that will be stored longer get packed in olive oil.

      2. Why not just buy a small assortment of the locally available olives, freeze them and see for yourself?

        1. we freeze them where I work all of the time ~ vaccum packed no liquid

          1 Reply
          1. re: chef4hire

            +1 - I will vacuum seal almost anything! Never had a problem. I'm sure this would work as well. You can successfully seal with or without "some" liquid, depending on your sealer.

          2. We buy the two packs of 5# cans of sliced olives from Costco and drain them and freeze them in ZipLock freezer containers. Have done this for several years. They taste like they just came out of the can... And are very inexpensive this way. No different than buying a frozen pizza with olives on top... :)

            1 Reply
            1. re: Juliomama58

              On those sliced olives, were they green or the black ripe kind?