My mom and uncle make marinated olives from scratch, a lengthy process which involves brining uncured olives in a big ceramic jar under a tin foil covered brick for many days and then marinating them. Naturally I came up with the “lazy man’s” version. Mine, while not nearly as fabulous as theirs, are a sufficiently flavor-packed alternative.
Smash this stuff into some crusty bread or chop it all up and use it as a tapenade for bread, roasted chicken or fish. Unmarinated olives might be a bit of a challenge to find but check your local specialty cheese shop, upscale deli or market. I used Graber olives which are plain, salt-brined green olives.
Makes about 2 cups
1 cup unmarinated green olives, pits removed (see How to Pit an Olive)
1/2 cup thinly sliced (at an angle) celery
1/2 cup olive oil
1 small clove garlic, halved
1/2 teaspoon red pepper flakes
1 tablespoon red wine vinegar
1/2 teaspoon coarse salt
A few turns of Freshly cracked black pepper
Add all ingredients to a bowl, mix, cover and refrigerate. Allow the olives to marinate overnight or at least for a few hours. Thaw them to room temperature before serving (because the olive oil will have chilled to a solid state and needs to thaw). You can keep any remaining olives in an airtight container or jar in the refrigerator for a week or two.