Yes, this is the time of year when olives are harvested – old ladies dressed in black sit like crows in the olive trees, raking the ripe olives off laden boughs with wooden combs onto nets spread below. Fires burn with fragrant olive wood logs, smoke curling up into the autumn air and warming unheated cottages.
Greece doesn’t sit with OPEC but as the producer of the world’s finest olive oil from its Cretan and Kalamata olive varieties, it certainly has some very expert oil sheiks producing both heavy crude and light sweet oil. With over 680 different kinds of olive tree, there are as many different kinds and grades of oil as there are wines. Someone somewhere is impressing someone by saying ” Ah, a languid little number from the sunny side of the tree….”
Unlike petroleum oil, Olive oil has been used for over 4,000 years for food, light, health and beauty. Its antioxidant properties not only are good for heart, circulation and various other health problems, but also protect and tone the skin, nails and hair.
I remember an old village lady who in her eighties still had raven-black tresses. She said it was from wiping her oily hands in her hair whenever she was cooking….L’Oreal, back to the drawing board, and Penelope Cruz and Eva Longoria, back to the kitchen.
While you are in the kitchen, here is a website with some lovely oily recipes.
and don’t forget to wipe your hands in your hair when you have finished….