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Riebeek Kasteel Kalamatas in a Blueberry Dressing
Mike & Juliana Meredith, working underneath the massive old oak tree at their Olive Boutique in Riebeek Kasteel, could not have chosen the name for their range of olive products any better – they have for years been at the forefront of innovation in the use of olives and oil in a variety of unexpected and delightful ways, making a tour down their product list a truly boutique experience.
Probably THE classic example of this is their kalamata olives in a blueberry dressing, which has almost since the beginning been the single most popular retail item in Tapenade. Pairing black olives with a blueberry dressing is one of those flavour combinations, like blue cheese and fig preserve, that sound counterintuitive on paper but in practice deliver a taste that lingers in the memory long after the last olive is picked from the bottom of the jar.
Toning down the sometimes harsh briny quality of the black olives also has the unexpected effect of turning this product into a ‘starter’ olive, the one whom we give to the un-initiated in order to turn them into raving olive lovers! However, for us perhaps the most satisfying use of a jar of these olives is simply up-ending them over a salad, turning the blueberry dressing into an instant salad dressing.
By Tracy Foulkes
Tracy Foulkes started NoMU in December 2000, and her latest addition to the NoMU product range is NoMU Stir, a rehydratable pesto available in Tomato & Herb and Tomato & Chilli. All you have to do is stir in hot water and olive oil (South African extra virgin, of course!!). Then use this awesome spread over freshly grilled bruschetta, added to pasta sauces, drizzled over oven-roasted vegetables, or simply used to dunk freshly baked bread. It’s the perfect quick-fix for hungry foodies!
HET VLOCK GREEN OLIVE CHUTNEY
Under Ansie Vlok’s dedicated supervision in the Het Vlock Casteel Kitchen on the Morester farm at the food of the Kasteelberg, a superb olive chutney made from green nocellara olives is made.
The product contains olives, sucrose, grape vinegar and herbs. No preservatives are added.
Ansie recommends this condiment to be enjoyed with any fish dish and mixed with mayonnaise makes a wonderful tartare sauce. It can also be used as a spread on toast or can be used as a base for a sandwich or even a pizza. Fill a filo tartlet with sweet red onions, parma ham and the Het Vlock Green olive chutney.
It is also beautiful with a cheese platter.
Ben Visser farms on the Eden Estate in Hartswater in the Northern Cape Province. The first trees were planted in 1995 and at present the Estate has 30 000 trees. Ben’s latest addition to the Olives South Africa product range is the Devotion range of olive soaps.
The range includes six different fragrances (Uplifting, Relaxing, Sensual, Exotic, Masculine and Sacred) and is colour coded using colour therapy as guidance to match the specific “mood” of each fragrance. Every soap contains olive, avocado and coconut oil with vegetable fat. An interesting texture is added with just a tad of dried olive leaves.
The soaps are prepared according to the ancient “Cold Process” method and are cured slowly for more than two months. The devotion soaps do not contain any artificial dyes or synthetic fragrances, artificial colourings, animal or nut products or any preservatives. The bars are 100% biodegradable and environmentally friendly.
All six fragrances are available in Tapenade Olive Shop.
RIEBEECK KASTEEL OLIVE BOUTIQUE'S GREEN OLIVE WHOLEGRAIN MUSTARD
The Olive Boutique in Riebeeck Kasteel was established in the year 2000, when Michael & Juliana Meredith imported an olive oil press from Italy. Since then, they have produced more than just their extra virgin olive oil, but a range of flavoured olives (including those famous Kalamata’s in a Blueberry Dressing), paste, tapenade and a huge range of beauty products.
And now they have added a brand new taste sensation to their range of products – olive mustard!
Mustard derives its name from a contraction of the Latin Mustum ardens meaning burning wine, in reference to the spicy heat of the crushed seeds and the French practice of mixing the ground seeds with must, the young unfermented juice of wine grapes.At the Olive Boutique, they take a preserved green olive and transform it into mouth-watering mustard. Mustard stimulates the appetite by increasing the salivation.
To assist you salivating right now, imagine serving the Green Olive Mustard;
- As a spread on sandwiches with cold meat, avocado pear and a good gorgonzola cheese.
- Use equal quantities extra virgin olive oil and freshly squeezed lemon juice, stir in two or more teaspoons of Olive mustard into the mixture and serve on steamed asparagus.
- Bring to a boil one container of fresh cream in a saucepan, add 4 or more teaspoons of mustard and serve on rump steak.
And if you have a bit left over, you can use it to “cure” toothache, or relieve scorpion sting.
Prepared mustard will not spoil, however it will lose flavour and fire as it ages. Use unopened mustard within one year and refrigerate when opened and use within one month.
RHEBOKSKRAAL CHOC'D OLIVE
Annalien Van der Colff and her husband Corrie moved to the farm Rhebokskraal in McGregor in 1990. With a degree in Fine Arts she planned to be a full time artist but, luckily for us all, things worked out a little differently. Their olive estate produces a wide variety of interesting products, including smoked olive pâté and very popular dried olives.
Annalien found the inspiration for her olive chocolate under a bit of pressure from her sons, who joked that she had found a way to get her olives into just about everything except ice cream. When THAT proved a challenge, the olives found their way into the choc sauce on top!
The chocolates as they are now, with pieces of dried olive inside, do indeed melt deliciously over ice cream, but Annalien also found that the slightly salty taste reminded people of dark chocolate, making the bars a very nice after dinner treat with dessert wines.
KAROO GREEN OLIVES STUFFED WITH GARLIC
Wally and Janine Nigrini have been farming olives at the farm Renosterkop just outside Beaufort West in the Karoo, since 1989.
One of the products they offer is the Green Queen Olives individually Stuffed with a pickled garlic clove, also farmed on Renosterkop. The olives are bottled in brine and vinegar.
These olives are the perfect hors d’oevre and will satisfy even the most discriminating garlic lover’s craving. It is great for garnishing salads, pasta or potato dishes, or use as a topping on pizza. Chop and add to your favorite salsa. Nestle a stuffed olive into the curve of grilled prawns to make skewers. Or use it as the perfect finishing touch for any savory or salty martini mix!
WILLOW CREEK OLIVE PASTES
by Willow Creek Olive Estate
Willow Creek is at the foot of the Langeberg Mountains in the Nuy valley near Worcester in the Western Cape. The land was first cultivated by die Rabie family in 1793 and the first oil pressed by Andries Rabie in 2002. Their olive oils, both extra virgin and flavoured, have won numerous international awards, and most recently, silver medals at the Los Angeles County Fair in May 2006. This month Willow Creek launches of a new exciting range of olive pastes, all available in Tapenade Olive Shop.
The Willow Creek Tapenade with Anchovies and Capers can be used as a filling or topping for roast meats or fish. It is a great spread on crostini or any crusty bread, as part of an antipasti platter and with cheese. Serve on potatoes dishes or pasta.
The Willow Creek Thai Olive Pesto with Coconut Milk, Lemon Grass, Ginger & Coriander can be used to marinate shrimps, flavour green curry dished or soaps. Next time you make pumpkin soap, stir a spoonful pesto into it. Make a dipping sauce for prawns.
The Willow Creek Chilli Olive Pesto comes in a medium hot version. Add to stir-fried beef or marinate roast meat. Add to butter to melt onto fish. Toss into hot pastas, potatoes or vegetables. Fill tomatoes with spinach and Chilli Olive pesto. Stir into savoury sauces, soups or salad dressings.
MORGENSTER WHITE TRUFFLE OLIVE OIL
by Morgenster Estate
Ever wondered about the elusive taste of the famous real white truffle from Piedmont?
Morgenster Estate is situated in Somerset-West, and was once part of Vergelegen, owned by Cape Governor Willem Adriaan van der Stel. In 1992, the farm was bought by Giulio Bertrand who planted the olive trees. Morgenster Extra Virgin Olive Oil was produced. This oil has been the recipient of the coveted L’Orciolo d'Oro prize in Italy for seven consecutive years since 1999. The most recent award was from L'Extravergine - A Guide to the Best Certified Quality Olive Oil in the World, which rated Morgenster Extra Virgin Olive Oil as the Best Blended Olive Oil in the World.
White truffles are a cross between a mushroom and a potato and are harvested with specially trained dogs to sniff out the truffles in the forests of mainly Italy and France. They are often buried under a foot of dirt, masking their pungent aroma. Sometimes pigs are used, but dogs are preferred since the pigs tend to eat the truffles themselves and at R25 000 for one kilogram, that can be costly!!
Morgenster imports a white truffle concentrate from Piemont in Italy. To produce the White Truffle oil, the concentrate is blended with the Morgenster Extra Virgin Olive Oil.
The product has a slightly garlic, peppery taste and a very strong smell of truffles. It is used in very small amounts as a finishing touch. Drizzle a little on pastas, salads, fish and meats. Finish a risotto or soups by dripping a few drops on the product before serving. It is also a wonderful compliment to scrambled eggs or omelet dishes.
Morgenster Truffle Olive Oil comes in a 60ml and 250ml bottle.
CHALONER OLIVE MARMALADE
by Perry Chaloner
This wonderful Olive Marmalade, made by Perry Chaloner from produce from his Stellenbosch farm, is one of the most popular items in Tapenade Olive Shop. This sweet condiment, made from olives, herbs, lemon, sugar and salt is versatile and works well in both savoury and sweet dishes.
It is a stunning accompaniment to all types of cheese – creamy, mild, sharp, aged cheddars and hard pungent pecorinos. Your cheeseboard (and breakfast table) will be incomplete without it. Serve it as a starter with baked goat’s cheese or serve on a cracker with a glass of chilled wine.
Use it as a relish to add sweetness to lamb chops, pork roasts or chicken dishes. Make tartlets with salmon and olive marmalade. Add it to sandwiches with cold meats and cheeses. Or give pancakes, crepes or deserts an intriguing twist.
Chalenor Olive marmalade comes in a 300g jar and retails at R37. The product has no colorants of preservatives. Refrigerate after opening.
And if you’re still skeptic about how a sweet olive spread tastes, there is only one way to find out.