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Spiced olives with feta cheese
Olives are mainly known because they are used to decorate pizzas. Olives come from the sunny Mediterranean area such as Italy, Greece, Spain and Portugal. There are lots of olive trees growing.

Vegetable or fruit?
Sometimes there's confusion about whether olives are a fruit or a vegetable. The Nutrition Center says an olive is a vegetable as it is equipped with a stone pit.

Olive trees up to 1000 years old
Olive trees can ber very old, sometimes up to 1000 years. The older the olive tree, the riper the fruit. Non ripe olives can be toxic. The tree itself does not need much water, they are fit to survive in hot and dry areas.

Olives hanging on the tree
The fruit
It may take up to 5 years before an olive tree bears fruit (olives). In this round fruit there's one hard pit. The ripening of the fruits happened approximately from July to September. The olives they pick from the tree are not yet ready for consumption because they still are bitter and hard. After picking, they first need to soaked in to a solution of water, salt and vinegar. The olives must then be carved. Great olives or carved on 2 sides. Sometimes you can see at the top of the olive that there is a cross. Many factories sell olives without a pit and fill it up with: nuts, peppers and feta cheese (cheese from sheep or goats).

Dark olive hanging on the tree
Green and black olives
Green olives are actually still olives that are just not mature enough. If they get a purple color than they are just ripe. Black olives are overripe. Many people may either green or black olive or neither of them. The flavor of the olives is additionally determined by the amount of sunshine that the fruit has been given. The darker the olive, the more and the stronger the flavor.

Olive oil
Manufactures create Olive oil. With this you can bake and fry meat in the pan.

Olive tree
Olives contribute to a good health. Each olive contains: Vitamin B6, Sodium, Salt, Potassium, Magnesium, Calcium, Phosphorus, Iron, Selenium, Copper, Zinc and Carbohydrates. This is already a very big part of our daily vitamins that we need as human beings. Olives are sometimes used in medicines.

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