Pan-fried olives with rosemary

Pan-fried olives with rosemary

Inject a little excitement into this classic finger food

Olives – those supremely flavorful little packages – have become a stand-by in most households. Indeed, a bowl of olives is the finger food of choice at dinner parties. Olives are now so common, it’s easy to take those gems for granted.

So it’s no surprise that a bowl of olives is always on my coffee table whenever friends come over for dinner. But since I always like to coax a bit more flavor out of things, I want my bowl of olives to bring some excitement – and even a little surprise – to my guests.

Meaty and warm, these are not your usual olives!

This recipe certainly fulfills both objectives. Biting into these meaty, warm olives is such an unexpected sensation that everyone always stops in their tracks and marvels. The olives turn out to be mellower when warmed, and their flesh literally melts in your mouth. Meanwhile, the pan-fried rosemary contributes its irresistible herbal-pungency to make the whole experience quite delightful.

So here’s to the olive and to the endless pleasure it gives us all!

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Pan-fried olives with rosemary

makes 2 cups
active time: 10 min

  1. 2 cups Greek, Cerignola, Alfonso, Kalamata or other meaty black olives
  2. 1/3 cup extra virgin olive oil
  3. 2 tablespoons coarsely chopped fresh rosemary

  1. Step 1:camera icon Drain olives and pat dry with a paper towel. (If the olives have been stored in oil, just drain them, there’s no need to pat them dry.)
  2. Step 2:camera icon Heat a large heavy-bottomed frying pan over medium-high heat. Add half the olive oil, the rosemary and olives, and sauté for 3 to 4 minutes until the rosemary becomes dark green and crisp, stirring from time to time. Transfer to a bowl and let cool for 5 minutes. Add the balance of the olive oil. Toss well and serve warm.
  3. Cook’s note: Keep refrigerated up to 1 week. Bring to room temperature before serving or reheat for 1 to 2 minutes over medium-high heat.

Pan-fried olives with rosemary

hors d’oeuvre, olive, rosemary


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  3. The next time I have guests for dinner, I will make this olives. They look delicious.

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  6. Donna Ford

    I love olives. Looks tasty! We will try them this weekend.

  7. The combination of olives and aromatic rosemary sounds divine.
    Will surprise my guests with it.

  8. …you can fry olives?

    OHMIGOSH! These look incredible. I’m new to the world of adoring olives so I absolutely cannot wait to try this out. Delish 🙂

  9. i only eat olives on pizzas but this is a very unique way to eat them. using rosemary must have added a wonderful, herby aroma to these olives…

  10. My kitchen is never without olives, especially when I’m entertaining. But I have to say I’ve never tried them fried. I love how you’ve described their texture–I know these would be a winner with me. 🙂

  11. Loving these olives – I love adding the rosemary…a great herb with olives!

  12. What a perfect accompaniment for the Thanksgiving table! I love putting little bites like this throughout the table. This is going to blow my family away! 🙂

  13. Olives are definitely a stable in my home. We eat them as often as we can and they are a go to snack. I never thought about pan frying them. Thanks so much for sharing this. I can’t wait to surprise my husband with them:)

  14. I love olives…I too put them out quite often! This recipe sounds full of flavor!! Such a nice way to serve them! Perfect for the holidays!

  15. Adore this recipe! Simple and lush with flavor, a perfect treat for holiday entertaining!

  16. I’ve never pan fried olives as a side dish … Looks great 🙂

  17. What an unique olive recipe, Viviane. I love the add of rosemary too.
    Have a great weekend!

  18. Our French Fridays with Dorie next week is a simple olive dish. Your post has me wanting to combine the olives and herbs ASAP….so simple and lovely, Viviane.

  19. this is wonderful lovely way to have olives

  20. I wished I liked olives, they always look so appealing. Will have to give this a try at our holiday cocktail party.

  21. Oh Viviane…fabulous idea. So simple and I can totally see how the flavors would come out. And Ilove rosemary.

  22. I never thought to try pan-frying olives. It sounds like a great idea to add something a little extra… they are just so good I might not have any left by the time I get everything out to cook them!

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