Thursday, August 5, 2010

Something Old, Something New

Olives all'Ascolana -- deep-fried, stuffed green olives. Devotee of Italian food that I am, I had never heard of these gorgeous little things ... how could that be???

Tom had read a review of Silvio's Organic Pizza, a place we'd eaten at back in March and promised to visit again, in which these unheard of treats were mentioned. Well, olive lovers that we are, how could we resist? And as someone who is always seeking new and intriguing foods, this was too fabulous an opportunity to let pass!

According to Italianfood.about.com, these breaded, fried olives were "renowned in Roman times, though the recipe for transforming them into stuffed olives is more recent, dating to the 17th century." They derive from the Ascoli region in eastern Italy and are an immensely popular street food, apparently. Who knew??? (Well, millions of Italians have apparently known for 400 years, but you know what I mean!)

Thus Olives all'Ascolana are very old, but they were brand spankin' new to us. So we meandered on over to Silvio's.

The olives were served fresh from the fryer, fragrant and enticing. They were very hot, clearly having been made just for us. But oh, were they luscious!!! Crackling and crisp on the outside, tender once bitten into, comfortingly familiar and yet distinctly novel. These could easily prove to be addictive! And the price is fair for the labor of love that they are -- $5.99/dozen -- with the stuffing and the breading all necessarily being done by hand.

I would show you a picture of one cut in half, so that you could see the filling (a nearly pureed meat mixture), but quite frankly we're all lucky to see the bowl of olives itself. As always, I took out my camera to start photographing my food. I framed the olives, I focused, I clicked ... and the camera shut off.

I tried again ... pffft.

I tried one more time simply because I'm obstinate and I was going to write about these olives, so there! Alas, no such luck -- dead battery, of course at a most inopportune moment.

But then as I downloaded photos over the weekend, I saw an unexpected image. Lo and behold, there was one perfect photo of the bowl of olives! Yay!!!

So if you're in Ann Arbor I highly, highly recommend the Olives all'Ascolana at Silvio's!!! If you're not in Ann Arbor, you're on your own to either find a truly authentic family-run Italian restaurant that knows about such important matters as deep-fried olives, or you'll have to do an internet search to find a recipe and make them yourself.

Sorry, but that's the best I can do after offering a hint of these seductive little tidbits! I know, I know -- I'm such a tease ... :)


Photobucket



Blogaholic Designs”=

14 comments:

Cranberry Morning said...

Oh. Good. Grief!! Those look and sound so delicious. We are huge olive lovers around this house. We buy them in great quantities, so as to never (hopefully) run out! I can imagine how great they'd be made that way.

And of course I can imagine the problem with the camera. I've experienced that - and also the fun time that comes when you're about to take the pic and it says, 'Card Full.' Grrrrrr.

Little Miss Can't Be Wrong said...

now i must find the recipe!! yum!

Same Sweet Girl: Memoir of a Southern Belle said...

I can't STAND olives...but my husband loooooves them!!!! He would absolutely love deep fried olives. I may have to try and make those for him. ;)

Jenn said...

Oh my oh my... now you are talking my style! I love stuffed olives. When I was in college a friend of mine and I experimented making stuffed olives... we just stuffed them with sausage, but man on man I was hooked. I'm part Italian and had never had them until then. (her grandma use to make them!) YUM!!!

Andrea the Kitchen Witch said...

Not an olive fan but my husband is, so it looks like we need to make a trip back to MI so he can feast on these deep fried babies :)

Marissa said...

I am sicilian, my grandparents are from palermo, sicily and I have NEVER heard of these! THEY LOOK AMAZING! I am totally going to have to hunt these little guys down and give them a try :)

Ma What's 4 dinner said...

Oh my goodness, that is heaven on a plate. Save me a few, I'll be over in 5!


Lots of yummy love,
Alex aka Ma What's For Dinner
www.mawhats4dinner.com

Sarah said...

Wow, those look/sound amazing! I love fried dill pickles, so I'm sure I'd like these too. I wish someone around here made them. Whew!

Haupi said...

I was expecting a tutorial, but I guess you don't have every recipe. They do look delicious and I like knowing about authentic regional dishes. I can only imagine how great they tasted hot and fresh. Fried breaded olives...how hard would it be to do that I'm wndering....

Haupi

Robin said...

I love black olives, but don't like green ones at all. I can sit and black ones all day long. Not that I recomment that, but... I have never once thought of frying and/or stuffing them. Very interesting. So, were they black or green? Or did they offer both kinds?

Rose said...

i love olives and these look great. I had never heard of this item. thanks for comment on my blog. yes, mother's cat was watching over her. have a good day. Rose

Yenta Mary said...

When we'd read about the olives, I think the article had said both black and green were offered; but we only got green, which is fine with me -- I'll eat both, but I prefer the green ones. And I was really impressed by how the breading stayed on -- I would have expected it to crumble, but it was pretty sturdy even when I tried cutting the olives with a fork when they were hot and holding them/biting into them seemed prohibitive. I'm not sure I'm ambitious enough to try making them, when they're so easy to order ....

even-star said...

What I want to know is how, as someone who adores olives, I didn't think of this myself? Maybe because olives are expensive where I live. My head asplode. These are going to be on the menu VERY soon

Candace said...

I didn't think that you could make a green olive any better....LOVE them! These look amazing!

Where oh where can I find me some of these? I don't see Ann Arbor in my future any time soon.

Have a happy weekend!
Candace

Ghosts of Postings Past and Present

Looking for Something ...?