the fable of the swallow and olive…

It is not clear as to whether the epithet declaring that one swallow does not a summer make was written from the view point of an ornithologist, sodden by the traditional August downpour, or from that of Don Juan just beginning his summer hols. On the other hand it would be unequivocal to declare that one small basket of olives does not a bottle of olive oil make but that unequivocality would not encompass the enormous pleasure I took in harvesting this basket of fruit from the four olive trees that have grown and developed in our small garden over the last ten years.

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About Food,Photography & France

Photographer and film maker living in France. After a long career in London, my wife and I have settled in the Vendee, where we run residential digital photography courses with a strong gastronomic flavour.
This entry was posted in 2015, Digital photography, Garden, Humour, Olive oil, olives, Photography, Prints, Uncategorized, Video, Writing and tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

51 Responses to the fable of the swallow and olive…

  1. Ali Buck says:

    This is just so wholesome…in every way.

  2. Sally says:

    Precious harvest

  3. Sue says:

    Truly a Salade Niçoise of sumptuous proportions!

  4. Mad Dog says:

    I’d be very happy with that harvest. I’m waiting with bated breath for the next installment… 🙂

  5. MELewis says:

    Amazing images but it’s the soundtrack that got me. That wonderful music, overlaid by the sound of the olives rustling in the basket. Very nice!

  6. Graham says:

    Our olive tree has, after a few years, produced a few olives. It’s growth has, however, been a bit, how shall we say, random. As a well known horticulturalist do you have any tips on pruning?

    • …do the the pruning around May to June and be fairly radical. Make sure there’s air in the middle of the tree and get rid of any shoots or branches that are pointing downwards or that are crossing….and don’t let it get too tall….there…that should kill it:)

  7. lulu says:

    You may not get enough olives to produce much oil, but surely there’s enough for a martini or two!

  8. Misky says:

    Ah. A dip into quietude: I’ll bring the vodka and a sneeze of vermouth, and you can bring the olives.

  9. I helped a friend who plant 10 olive trees about 15 years ago and now he bottles and we are eating (in NZ) his olives.. it is immensely satisfying..your harvest ! c

  10. Francesca says:

    A joy to behold. I am expecting a similar sized crop this year.

  11. Lovely film Roger. If only it were warm enough here in the UK for olive trees 😦

  12. ardysez says:

    As beautiful a film as are your still images. Thoroughly enjoyed it.

  13. what a beautiful tribute of your olive crop, can’t imagine that feeling, for sure I loved the sound of them plopping in the basket and I even noticed a cat running through the shadows of….Enough to make a great olive tapenade.

  14. Sadly Roger the video won’t play in Germany. Love the colors in the still though and the thoughts behind it..as always.

  15. Loved the film – who would have thought you were such a star! And if you’d told me you were about to harvest we could have lent you our nets 😉

  16. So perfectly transportive, Roger. Hope to see more videos! Cheers from my – non-home harvested! – dirty martini to yours.

  17. How lovely to be able to have olive trees. Way too cold here for that. But I’d love to have some.

  18. Karen says:

    A man of so many talents…really lovely Roger, especially with the music. I’ll be waiting for the next episode.

  19. Kally says:

    Wow!! Looks delicious! You’re making my tummy rumble

  20. Chris says:

    I’m a bit late to this blog post but I was just wondering how you ended up curing your olives if at all yet. We just did a batch..27 lbs and have discovered that the water soaking process takes much longer than most recipes suggest to remove that bitter compound. We rinsed ours every day for about a month, them brined them in a simple mixture of salt and vinegar…no processing, just refrigerate and they are quite tasty, after again…sitting in their brine for a few weeks.
    Your olives are beautiful!

    • I had a pretty similar experience. In the end I soaked them in water for about 3 weeks and then brined them in salt and a very small amount of vinegar. I haven’t refrigerated mine, but put them at the back of a dark cupboard. I’m going to check them around March or April next year. Many thanks for the visit and the input…cheers:)

  21. Chris says:

    Oh, my pleasure…I often pop over and visit your blog from Cecilias. I am a longtime member of the fellowship! 🙂 In fact we met last spring in Portland when she did that (I can’t remember what it was thing)
    One more question…two actually…did you slit your olives first, (I did) and are you a native Frenchman?
    Cheers back!
    Chris from Gig Harbor, Washington state…

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