Pan Con Aceitunas (Olive Sandwich) – My Picnic Essential

Happy weekend everyone! If you happen to be somewhere where the weather will be nice, it would be a great idea to have a picnic with friends, don’t you think? There are very few things in the world that I like more than having picnics. Sitting on the grass, under the sun or the shade of a tree seems to be extremely therapeutic for me. When in Lima, I love to go on Saturday mornings to practice yoga in my favorite park (Reducto), which is right next to the organic farmer’s market. After class, I usually bring a book, buy my groceries, and have a picnic by myself, or when I’m lucky, a friend or 2 are willing to wake up early and come along for a weekly dose of nature.

When in New York, I have picnics as often as the weather allows (it doesn’t rain in Lima, but in the Big Apple it’s a completely different story). I have discovered many beautiful, small and quiet parks in my neighborhood, which I like to call my “secret gardens“. A few weeks ago, I had one of my usual fresh air and bare feet rendez-vous, and decided to make one of my favorite Peruvian sandwiches for the occasion: pan con aceituna (bread with olives). I got the inspiration browsing through Gaston Acurio’sLa Cocina de la Calle” (Street Food) book, which has a recipe for this classic sandwich, but grilled and with aji amarillo. I’ve always eaten it cold and aji-less, but of course, one can change it as desired (why not add some arugula, for example?)

When I was in highschool I used to hate olives, and gagged at the view of my best friend’s lunchbox which usually contained these olive sandwiches. It seemed to me like her mother was a very mean woman trying to torture her daughter. Strangely, my friend seemed unaffected by it, and ate it quietly. As a grown up, and with my acquired taste for our very tart botija olives, this sandwich has become a delight to eat. If you’re also an olive lover, I recommend you try it. Just get some French or Ciabatta bread, cut some botija olives (the large, purple, fleshy ones, like in the picture) in half, add a few slices of queso fresco, and your picnic is set. Take your shoes off, sit on the grass, and enjoy this simple and delicious snack!


  1. I don’t think I’ve ever had a sandwich with olives. Looks yummy!

  2. Que rico! A mi me gusta mucho ir de picnic y por supuesto que incluire esta receta para el proximo. Que buena combinacion!
    Saludos desde California!

  3. oh girl! i made an amazing sandwich with an olive bread i found in NYC last year. I can barely remember the recipe since I made it up on the fly during a quick fire competition, but you’ve inspired me to try to recreate it!

  4. This will be my first sandwich with olives. What a different kind of meal! Hmmm… and with queso fresco? delicioso!

  5. Mi papá nos enseñó a comer aceitunas desde que mis hermanas y yo eramos chiquitas, no se si a ellas les quedo el gusto pero a mi si ! Tostadas con queso fresco, orégano y gotas de aceite de oliva para el desayuno o la hora que uno quiera! A hacer picnic se ha dicho!

    • Comer aceitunas en Perú es lo máximo! Y los típicos sanguchitos de aceituna en cuanto santo infantil había, eran imperdibles. Demasiado ricos.

  6. You know what this is, right? It’s aperitivo time kicked up about 22 notches. Who says you need a palillo and tiny crackers to eat aceitunas and queso as an hors d’oeuvre. Make a bocadillo out of it and REALLY enjoy it. Awesome idea!!!

  7. Oh, thanks for sharing this recipe! It looks easy enough to make. And even better to eat, I bet…

  8. Yum! You just reminded me I need to plan my first summer picnic 🙂

  9. Do these olives taste more like black olives or green olives?

  10. My husband looks at me as if I was crazy when I eat pan con aceitunas. I love it 🙂 Y mejor si son aceitunas peruanas 🙂

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