Olive you! I remember being younger and learning that if you mouthed “olive juice” it looked like you were saying “I love you”. Its been awhile since such innocent childhood moments. Now, when I make this bread, I’ll chop up some olives really small and put them in the cat food bowls. I think they smell the olives as soon as I get ready to make the Olive Loaf and they are waiting as close as they can get. While they eat the olives I’ll rub some juice on their coats. It is pretty hilarious watching them chase each other around and go into a licking frenzy. Of course, all this happens after the bread has been put away to proof, so cat hair is not an issue!

In truth though, I love olives. My sisters and I would put olives on our finger tips, become olive monsters, then eat them one by one, over and over until our stomachs near burst. It wasn’t until later in life that I learned the beauty of Kalamata olives, and green olives stuffed with garlic. This loaf has been inspired by the variety and complexity of different olives. When I get an olive loaf from a market stand I generally enjoy it. The bites with olive, usually Kalamata are glorious, but infrequent.

My Olive Loaf is full of Kalamata and Green olives, as well as pickled garlic and a hint of pepper. The pepper is coarse ground so some bites come out spicy, some oliv-ie. But I can confidently say that no loaf I have ever tried comes close to the heaven that exists in my Olive Loaf.

Olives: “olive juice”!