It’s time to start cutting the scapes. The music garlic has formed scapes and we want to cut them while they are still young and tender.
What are garlic scapes???
They are the seed heads produced by hardneck garlic varieties. They appear in the spring, and if left to grow they will flower and produce dozens of tiny garlic bubils (seeds). Most growers cut the scape off the garlic plant in order to allow the garlic to put more energy into growing a bigger bulb. If cut early the scapes are tender and delicious. They are said to have the same nutritional value as garlic bulbs, and although they possess a milder flavor when cooked, they are a culinary delight. They are great roasted, grilled, stir fried or used raw in dips, salads and pesto. To discover great garlic scape recipes simply do an internet search for garlic scape recipes or try the pesto recipe at the bottom of the page. They are only available for a short time in the spring but can be preserved by freezing or pickling.
The above is a photo of a garlic scape forming. If allowed to grow it will probably form a second curl before straightening up and forming a seed head on top.
This photo is some of the scapes I cut last year.
Garlic Scape Pesto
1 cup garlic scapes (8 or 9 scapes), top flowery part removed, cut into 1⁄4-inch slices
1⁄3 cup walnuts
3⁄4cup olive oil
1⁄4to 1⁄2 cup grated Parmesan cheese
1⁄2 teaspoon salt, or to taste
Ground black pepper
1. Place the scapes and walnuts in the bowl of a food processor and blend until well combined and somewhat smooth. Slowly drizzle in the oil and process until integrated.
2. With a rubber spatula, scoop the pesto out of the bowl and into a mixing bowl. Add Parmesan and salt and pepper to taste.
3. Keeps for up to one week in the refrigerator. Also freezes well; the cheese can be added to the pesto after it has thawed.
Makes about 3⁄4 cup.
Garlic scapes are only available for a few short weeks in the spring. If you are looking for scapes sent me an email at firstname.lastname@example.org.