What are Garlic scapes? They are the delicious bolts that garlic plants send up in attempts to reproduce when their time has come. They must be removed or snapped off the plants so that all of the garlics energy can go into garlic bulb development. If you let the scapes fully develop, they will burst open with little purplish bulblet. The scapes however are ripe for the picking when they look like the photo below, nice and curly.
You just snap them off right above junction of the bolt and the top leaves. This leaves you with a long curly stem of garlicy yummyness. It is easy to pick up garlic scapes at your local farmers market if you can’t find them in stores.
There are many delicious things you can do with garlic scapes in the short window of scape season. Here are 5 of my favourites!
5. Grilled Scapes
This is by far one of the easiest and most delicious things you can do in the peak of scape season. I do this on a barbecue, until they are slightly blackened. At this point they get a great sweetened flavour and they become more tender. mmmm…. my mouth is watering just thinking about them.
4. Scape Quiche
You can use any Quiche recipe just substitute the asparagus with scapes. They soften up and get sweeter. You could also use leftover grilled scapes in the quiche if you want a little bit more of a roasty flavour.
3. Pickled Scapes
This is a great way to preserve scapes so you can enjoy their tastiness all throughout the year. I enjoy the mellowed flavour of pickled scapes in 4 bean salads and all sorts of other salads all year-long.
2. Scape Pizza
Like the grilled scapes the scapes are blissfully sweet on a pizza, and pair well with a balsamic vinegar marinara sauce
1. Scape Pesto
There is a great recipe for scape pesto all over the internet. I tend to opt for a vegan version with nutritional yeast, walnuts, and lemon juice. It is a great spread for toast and a great sauce for pasta!
These are just a few ideas of what you can do with scapes. What do you do with your garlic scapes?