THE BLOG
03/10/2015 04:33 pm ET Updated May 10, 2015

How to Get Anyone to Like Olives

Christina Holmes

By Sheela Prakash, Epicurious

So, you say you don't like olives?

Olives are polarizing. While so many people adore their unique flavor, others shun them. The thing is, and I really believe this: everyone can learn to like olives. I hated olives until I actively tried to like them. I started small--tucking them away in focaccia or blitzing them into a spread. Soon, I began acquiring a taste for them. Now I've joined the small but vocal crowd of olive lovers. Yep, this is Project Olive. Gather your olive hating friends and make them believers:

STEP 1: TAPENADE
Olives are just one component of flavor-packed tapenade, so making a sandwich with a thin swipe of it a good place to start on your olive quest. Garlic, anchovies, capers, and citrus zest mingle with the briny olives to produce a spread that's a great introduction to olives without being too much olive.

STEP 2: PUTTANESCA
When chopped olives are hiding behind a cloak of tomato sauce and plenty of garlic, it's a safe situation. This riff on the classic Italian puttanesca sauce punches up otherwise ho-hum haddock resulting in a salty, hearty dish that's easy to like.

STEP 3: PANZANELLA
There's so much happening in this Italian bread salad that you'll hardly notice the olives. But instead of hiding in a sauce, they're tucked among torn radicchio, shaved fennel, cheese, slices of salami, and hunks of toasted bread.

STEP 4: ROAST CHICKEN WITH OLIVES
Roasting chicken legs over a bed of fingerling potatoes and pitted Kalamata olives is an easy win. Crispy roasted chicken and potatoes are a familiar favorite, but the olives add just the right amount of salty brine to them. There's a lot of olive flavor here, but roast chicken is so easy to love.

STEP 5: THE WHOLE OLIVE AND NOTHING BUT THE OLIVE
Congratulations! If your olive hater has made it this far it's time to try a few on their own. But just in case, a soak in gin and vermouth helps ease any final olive-related tension.

More from Epicurious:
20 Must-Try Ways to Pair Items You Already Have In Your Pantry

The 57 Best Cooking Tips of All Time

12 Lightning-Fast Chicken Dinners to Make Now

Chocolate Overload: 10 Must-Try Recipes for True Chocoholics

This Recipe Has 908 Comments, and They're All Hilarious

These Addictive, Amazing 22-Minute Meals Will Change Weeknight Dinner