View Full Version : White flecks in my martini olives

03-04-2005, 06:17 PM
Okay, I threw them out, then realized I should have asked you all. My wonderful olives stuffed with garlic and jalapenos had been in the fridge for a month or so. There was some white stuff that was floating around, and I worried that it was mold. Now I wonder if it was just congealed something-or-other caused by refrigeration. Anyone know?

03-04-2005, 06:52 PM
I've seen both on my olives -- simple congealed chunks of olive oil, or scums of mould.

Without personal observation, it's hard to tell. :p

03-04-2005, 06:55 PM
I have also had bits of olive oil solidify on things in the fridge. That would be my first guess. I have had some olives get a bit soft and toss them, but never moldy -- although that would be a possibility.

03-05-2005, 06:45 AM
I'm thinking it was just solidified olive stuff, and I threw them away for no good reason. I really couldn't remember how long they'd been in the fridge though. My fault for not drinking more martinis and using them up sooner. :cool:

03-05-2005, 06:49 AM
I don't think I've ever heard of moldy olives...the salt content alone could preserve a mummy!! But just because I've never seen it doesn't mean it couldn't happen. :p

03-05-2005, 06:54 AM
Now that I think about it, the mould has always happened on my jarred black Kalamatas, which have much less salt in the brine.

03-05-2005, 07:04 AM
My local paper had an article recently on the shelf life of food. Among the tips: "Musco Family Olive Co. says consumers should toss olives in cloudy liquid. The fuzziness indicates that oxygen has been mixed with the brine and bacteria is beginning to form." I don't know if your olives had reached that stage yet, but maybe you'll feel better about tossing them.

03-05-2005, 07:38 AM
That is odd.
I had contacted the Santa Barbara Olive company once when I saw some white stuff floating. They said it was natural fermentation...good stuff... and if I was nervous, could rinse the olives but that there was no danger of eating it.

03-05-2005, 08:11 AM
I was a little taken aback by the advice too. Maybe they were reading more into the description -- "white flecks" vs. "cloudy stuff." Or maybe the color makes a difference -- grayish vs. more whitish? But then, the article I cited did metion "fuzzy" too. :confused:

But then, what about the mother you sometimes find in vinegar? I always thought that was OK (avoid the mother, but use the vinegar). Couldn't this be pretty much the same thing?

03-05-2005, 09:17 AM
When I had the white spots, I had just bought some marinated peppers. The store was not nearby, so I wasn't going to return them. I called the 800# on the container to ask/complain before I tossed them. They explained that it was the olive oil which, I also discovered in a salad, will solidify in the fridge. I have since noticed smaller flecks on some green olives. It's bit's of olive oil, and the bigger, fatter and juicier your olives, the more likely you are to get a bit. I think it was also som kalamatas that I had get soft or a bit slimy (toss those).