Blogging from A to Z Challenge
Today's post is about the olive, valued since ancient times for its fruit, oil and wood. Olive trees thrive around the Mediterranean, as well as other arid regions of the world.
|The Olive Fruit, or Drupe|
Some olive trees are reputed to be thousands of years old. This tree at the Pont du Gard in France is a mere youngster at 100.
|Olive Tree at the Pont du Gard|
|Potted Olive Tree, Uzès|
A simple olive press, like this one on a farm in Tuscany, can be used to extract the oil.
|Olive Press, Tuscany|
Modern machinery is used for large scale production.
|Olive Oil Production in Provence|
Olives cannot be eaten directly from the tree. They must be fermented, cured and/or marinated with a variety of flavourings to become edible.
|Olives at the Cours Saleya Market, Nice|
The fruit can also be prepared as a tasty spread, or tapenade, made of chopped olives, capers, olive oil and flavourings.
|Tasting of Tapenades in Provence|
|Olives at Dinner in Tuscany|
The olive has been a welcome addition to tables around the world for centuries. As a topping on a pizza, added to a dry martini, or oil drizzled on a salad – what is your favourite way to eat an olive?
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