Don’t forget – buy your tickets to the new Slow Food Whidbey “Taste of Whidbey” event at the markets on Saturday! Limited tickets available so best to pre-purchase if you can. $25 a ticket. Event will be Sunday, June 27th at Greenbank Farm from 2 to 4 p.m. Five local grocers, five great local chefs working together to offer a “tasting” of Whidbey’s great seasonal fare. Plus wine from Whidbey Winery! Great food, great cause. Come eat and hang out with the growers, chefs and other foodies! We will have tickets at the Coupeville and Bayview Willowood Farm booths for sale. Tickets will be available at the door day of the event, until we run out!
And now, back to our regular scheduled topic. Something about garlic scapes, I do believe! To refresh my memory, here’s a photo. Or two. Or three.
So here they are, in all their garlicky glory. The “scape.” Beloved in Asian cuisine, relatively unknown in American. Produced by “hardneck” garlic. Essentially the “seed head” of a garlic plant. Each garlic bulb only produces one. Once a year. Precious, precious commodity.
And another precious commodity. My youngest, at about 6 months. Her teething ring of choice? That’s right folks, nothing appeases a teething baby better than a garlic scape! Not only a great shape to grab for little hands, and the perfect mix of firm/soft and unbreakable texture. But then your baby has garlic breath!!!!!!! My farmer heart overflows with pride.
So, as many folks ask when seeing garlic scapes for the first time. What the heck can you do with these things! As the pictures above show, what the heck CAN’T you do with these things????
In general, garlic scapes can be used in anything you would use garlic in. They will be a bit milder. But…If you want to get a bit more creative…. Try grilling them! Try braising them! Try stir-frying them! Try them with a pot roast! Try them under a bed of salmon! Try them in pesto! Try them pickled!
Really, as long as you have taste for garlic, you are going to like garlic scapes. Think asparagus texture, garlickly flavor. How can you go wrong with that?
Here are a few recipes, to get you even more inspired…
You will need equal parts of the vinegar, how much depends on how much you are going to pickle. Chop garlic and pack clean mason jars. Boil equal parts of both vinegars, add sugar and salt to taste. Sugar should balance the acidity of the vinegar. How sweet – versus tart – you make it is a personal preference depending on how you like your pickles. When boiling, pour over scapes. Add a pinch of whole fennel seed. Seal lid. These pickles are ready in 4 hours. If you prefer to keep the scape whole (which gives you a very cool shape on a plate), you should plan to let the pickles sit for at least a week (or more) so they absorb the pickling juices. By chopping the scapes you provide more surface area to absorb the pickling juices quickly.