Growing backyard olives

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In the May 2010 issue of Burke’s Backyard magazine, on sale Monday, May 3, our kitchen garden story is all about growing olives in your own backyard.

Olives make beautiful shade trees, they look terrific in pots too, and if you want the great look of olive trees but aren’t all that keen on harvesting the fruit, there are now some low-fruiting varieties of olives available as well. For all the growing and care tips for backyard olives, make sure you get the May 2010 issue of ‘Burke’s Backyard’ magazine, available nationally wherever magazines are sold.

Tracy Rutherford’s olive and rosemary corn bread

As a special bonus for Don Burke’s 2UE listeners, we also have a recipe for olive and rosemary corn bread. This is the quickest and easiest bread of all to make – there’s no yeast – and it’s wonderful served with soups or any dish where there’s plenty of delicious sauce to mop up.

1 cup (175g) cornmeal (polenta)
1 cup (150g) self-raising flour
1/2 teaspoon salt
2 eggs
1 cup buttermilk
1 cup (145g) pitted olives, roughly chopped
1 tablespoon chopped rosemary

1. Heat the oven to 190°C. Lightly grease a 20cm spring-form tin. Combine the cornmeal, flour and salt in a large bowl.

2. Whisk the eggs and buttermilk together and add to the dry ingredients. Fold in gently until just combined. Fold in the olives and rosemary.

3. Bake for 30 minutes until risen, lightly browned and a skewer comes out clean when inserted into the centre of the bread.

4. Let the bread stand in the tin for 5 minutes, then release the sides of the tin and slide the bread from the base onto a wire rack. Serve warm or at room temperature. This bread is lovely as an accompaniment to soup, or to mop up the sauce in dishes such as any casserole, or osso buco.

How to cure olives

For our fact sheet on how to cure olives, click here