This recipe for Marinated Castelvetrano Olives is an easy appetizer. Flavored with Pink Peppercorns, Olives, and Shallots, it is a recipe you will find returning to time after time.
We are a family of olive eaters. I love all olives, regardless of color. My son is a black olive only eater, while my husband and daughter are partial to green olives. We visit our local olive bars and buy jars of garlic or blue cheese stuffed olives for stocking stuffers. We are all in on olives. So it’s not a coincidence that one of our favorite snacks/noshes/appetizers are these Marinated Castelvetrano Olives. They are very simple to make and are simply delicious.
Truthfully, you really can’t substitute anything for these ingredients.
I’m all about substituting ingredients and modifying recipes, but in this case, I wouldn’t consider making this recipe without all of these ingredients.
Most of these are pantry staples (olive oil, garlic, shallots), but there are two ingredients which are essential to this recipe, Castelvetrano Olives and pink peppercorns. You simply cannot make this recipe without these two ingredients.
Costco regularly carries a 25 oz jar of Mezzetta brand Castelvetrano olives for $8.49. I keep a jar on hand for those times when Costco doesn’t have them (it has happened!). The pink peppercorns are a bit harder to source in my area.
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When I first wrote this post, Whole Foods is the only store I’ve found in my area that carried the pink peppercorns. Since then, I find that they are more widely available. But if you can’t find them locally, Amazon does carry them as well as the Castelvetrano olives.
What are Pink Peppercorns?
Pink peppercorns are actually not true peppercorns but are the ripe berries of the Brazilian pepper tree. In fact, a more accurate name for them is actually Pink Pepper Berries. I find the Pepper Berries have a sweet, almost piney taste and are much more delicate than true peppercorns. But, if you are allergic to cashews or mangos, then I’d stay away as they are related.
My daughter and I just tossed a few of the Pink Pepper Berries in our mouths so that we could accurately describe them and were surprised at the sweetness. They give a subtle depth to light foods, like fish and chicken. AND OLIVES!
Castelvetrano Olives are solely grown in western Sicily, near the town of Castelvetrano. The olive is actually cured in lye to remove any bitterness and then heavily rinsed to remove all traces of the lye.
This treatment also helps preserve the bright green color of the Castelvetrano. I find this olive to be meatier, more buttery and have less of a bite than most other green olives.
- 3 cups drained Castelvetrano olives
- 1/4 cup very thinly sliced shallots
- 3 cloves garlic, thinly sliced
- 1 TB + 1 tsp crushed pink peppercorn
- 1/2 cup olive oil
- Combine all ingredients and let sit for 3 hours at room temperature before serving. Store leftovers in refrigerator.
We make a big batch of these marinated Castelvetrano olives and keep them in the fridge. I’m not sure just how long you could keep them as they rarely last longer than a week in our home, but I’d imagine that the oil helps to preserve them for a good bit longer than a week.
So, keep an eye out for Pink Pepper Berries and Castelvetrano Olives! These are two ‘pantry staples’ for me, so I always keep a stash.
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