Picholines are almond shaped olives with a point at one end. They have a firm texture and a fresh taste profile. They are perfect for any dish calling for meaty green olives - yes, besides Moroccan cooking - you can use them in French, Spanish, Italian, Greek or even Middle Eastern dishes. They are also great antipasti, and cocktails.
Olive cultivation is central to Moroccan cuisine and culture. One can understand then why the Moroccans are masters of curing, marinating and infusing olives, and why they eat olives at just about every meal, even breakfast.
Over the last two millennia the indigenous Berber peoples have endured invasion and conquest, each culture that came left its mark on the land, its people, their cuisine. A wealth of culinary creativity and the amazing quality of the bounty of ingredients from the everyday to the exotic make Morocco a culinary mecca.
Introduced and re-introduced over the centuries, olive cultivation is central to Moroccan cuisine and culture. One can understand then why the Moroccans are masters of curing, marinating and infusing olives, and why they eat olives with just about every meal, even breakfast.
Olives were most likely first planted in ancient times, and each succeeding culture that invaded and stayed planted or replanted.
Today the predominant variety of olive planted in Morocco is the Picholine Marocaine, the cousin to the French Picholine Languedoc. Given the milder and more consistent climate in Morocco the Picholine Marocaine grows into a superior table olive.
The proof of this proposition is that France imports tons and tons of these olives to eat themselves and to export as a "Product of France" - yes most French Picholines that are sold in this country are in fact grown in Morocco. The best picholine olives in Morocco are said to come from the foot of the Atlas Mountains.