Wednesday, June 9, 2010

Garlic Scapes

Garlic Scapes and Radishes.  

I feel like most people know what garlic scapes are, having been growing garlic for a few years now, but I find that that's not the case.  Garlic is planted in the fall and grows like an onion in the spring.  About this time, it starts throwing up scapes from the center of the plant.  When the scapes curl over, it's time to cut them off.  This allows the plant to focus on the root, where the garlic bulb is, instead of on the growing scapes.  

The scapes have a garlic-y/onion-y flavor and can be cooked into soups and sauces...pretty much in anything you would use garlic and onions in.  

My favorite thing to do with the scapes is to grind them in a blender with olive oil, kind of like one would do with basil to make pesto.  I then freeze the scape/olive oil blend in ice cube trays.  When they are frozen, I take them out and bag them, label them (when I'm being smart), and freeze them.  I use them mostly in pesto and pasta sauces, but I do throw them in soups and stews...and whatever strikes me.  I usually make a batch of pesto with basil and herbs and scapes, but for the most part, I make and freeze them separately and combine them from the freezer later.  (I make pesto the same way, blending in and turning it into cubes!)

So, buy some garlic this fall and plant it!  
It is so easy to grow
and who doesn't love garlic?!?

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