Olives are one of the most popular traditional products of our country. This seems rather fair, since they provide us with the precious Greek olive oil.
Whether green or black, olives are one of the major appetizers of the Greek table. The olives in Greek gastronomy accompany almost everything! Meat dishes with vegetables, fresh beans, artichokes, bulbs are an ideal olives combination. In a modern edition olives also accompany sandwiches, pasta recipes and other snacks like pizza etc. Nevertheless, Greeks also consume them raw, as a side dish or appetizer. Despite this, a few recipes with olives as main ingredient are very interesting. They are considered an ideal “partner” to balance the taste intensity of fatty meats (e.g. pork, wild boar, duck). Nutritional value
Also are a natural source of fiber, minerals and monounsaturated fatty acids. The two most known Olive varieties of Greece are Kalamata Olives & Green Chalkidiki Olives.
Kalamata olives (Olea europaea var. Ceraticarpa):
It is one of the best table olives variety. It gives black olives, with firm flesh, bright color, features that increase the consumption of the fruit.
It is also one of the most famous Greek varieties. They are growing in Peloponnese, mainly in Messinia, Lakonia and Achaia. Trees are fairly high and produce large fruits. The tree’s main characteristics are firstly that the leaves are larger than all varieties of Greek olives and secondly that the kernel “separates” from the flesh very easily. It is one of the best varieties of table olives showing growing demand in foreign markets.
Chalkidiki green olives come exclusively from the varieties “Chondrolia Chalkidiki” and “Chalkidiki”.
Green Halkidiki olives are characterized by a robust and glossy skin with a light green color with rich, firm and juicy flesh, a delicate fruity aroma and slightly bitter and spicy taste. Characterized by large fruit size with a high proportion of flesh to stone, they are produced in a variety of ways, pitted, stuffed with almond, pepper or garlic and sliced.
The long period of relatively low temperatures during the harvest period, combined with cultivation techniques contribute to the large shape of the olives.