Sunday, June 14, 2009

Garlic Scape Recipes

In a previous post I asked for garlic scape recipes from my wonderful readers since I had never cooked with them before. Not one of you came through with fabulous recipes or any recipes for that matter - good or bad. I'm guessing then you need a fabulous recipe, because if you had one surely you would share with me. Right? You all aren't holding out on me are you?

My first trial was garlic scapes and chard. I often use garlic when I cook my chard so it seemed an obvious pairing. Since the scapes seemed very strong while I cut them, I sliced up those scapes really small. This turned out to be a mistake. Garlic scapes have a strong flavor when raw, but when cooked they lose that intense flavor. The have a wonderful mild flavor. Suffice it to say chard is way too strong for the poor mild scapes. Stick with cloves for your chard.

Chinese cabbage on the other hand is a great pairing. I made a sweet chili and chicken stirfry. The sauce was mild flavored. The major vegetable was Chinese cabbage, but there were quite a few garlic scapse thrown in there. I sliced them to about an inch to an inch and a quarter long. This is definitely the way to do scapes. No dicing allowed. When cooked use them as a vegetable instead of as a seasoning. They are quite delicious. I can even see them used as a vegetable by themselves. Just stirfry them. Yum.

Oh you wanted a recipe did you? Hehe. I usually don't do stirfries with recipes. I just throw stuff in. So there you go - my recipe, just throw stuff in. Ok I'll give you a recipe, but not for that. My all time favorite thing I found to do with garlic scapes is salad dressing. It is a take off of garlic salad dressing and is quite yummy. Its only flaw is that it is a bit too thick to pour easily. I'll have to work a bit more on it next time, but for now here it is.

Daphne's Garlic Scape Dressing

  • 1 oz garlic scapes
  • 1/4c olive oil
  • 1/4c white wine vinegar
  • 1/2c mayo
  • 3T dijon mustard
  • 3T honey
  • 1/4t salt
  • pepper
  • few dashes of Worcestershire sauce

Blend until smooth.

I might point out that this has a very strong garlic taste since this garlic is not cooked. If you don't like it really strong cut down on the scapes. I like mine strong.

And I learned something new about garlic scapes. I've always heard that softneck garlics don't put out scapes. I have some garlic scapes of an unknown softneck variety in my garden. They are putting out scapes. Their scapes are not curly like my hardnecks, but they go straight up and are very thick. Why oh why am I getting softneck scapes?

Well it turns out there is a kind of garlic - Artichoke garlic that can form scapes, though there is disagreement in the blogosphere about how they behave and whether it really happens. Most of the scapes come up like normal (except for that lack of curl), but the one above has such a thick flower that it is splitting the stalk before it gets out. Very strange.


  1. Sounds like a delicious recipe Daphne. I've never grown Garlic let alone used the scapes in cooking. Promise I would of shared a recipe if I had one. :)

  2. Tonight we used garlic scapes (raw) and asparagus (blanched) along with toasted hazelnuts, cheese, and olive oil to make a pest of sorts. We saved the top halves of the asparagus and put the bottom halves into the pesto. So we had pasta with asparagus & scape pesto with asparagus spears. Very garlicy and very good :)

  3. It all sounds Yummy! Last night we had grilled garlic scapes along with our meal. Not something I would do if I didn't already have the grill going but great all the same. You have to watch them carefully so they don't dry out but they are great.

  4. I still have not picked my scapes off, most have done a double curl already. I will have to try your dressing, I bet it would be really good on a cesar salad. They would make a nice pesto too, then freeze them in cubes.

  5. I know I didn't offer a recipe- thanks for sharing! I used to get these in my order when I purchased organics groceries from a company that would deliver weekly here. I didn't even know what they were- I'd just chop up a few and add them to all sorts of meals. Did you start these? I would love to grow them sometime- I need input, Daphne :) please advise with an email!

  6. I meant to send you a recipe! You might be interested in the following article on scapes in Mother Earth news:

    My recipe is: sliced chorizo, onion, scapes (fried up with a little oil) then add chopped blace kale, sliced raw potato, fresh parsley, thyme, bay, dried pepper flakes, S&P and cook down with a little water until soft. Serve up with crusty bread and feta cheese crumbled on top. Excellent with a tempranillo or grenache!

  7. pernnialgardener, it is the first time for me, but I'm having fun experimenting.

    Emily, that sounds delicious. I love asparagus too.

    fullfreezer, hmm grilled scapes. I hadn't thought of that one. It also sounds like a good way to get rid of a lot of scapes all at once.

    Dan, I've read they are more tender if you pick them right away. There is such debate over when or if you should take off the scapes.

    DirtDigger, yes they are just the flowers from garlic plants (hardnecks usually). Last fall I planted four different kinds of garlic to see what would grow well here. The scapes are just a nice bonus. The real harvest will be laster.

    jaxter, Oh that sounds good. I like the recipe from Mother Earth News too. I would think they would go really well with tomatoes.

  8. I thought this article was funny and had some good ideas too.

    New York Times

  9. DirtDigger, I wish they gave the recipes, but it does give me some ideas. It was quite fun to read :>

  10. I tend to use them in place of regular garlic, in omelette's and chili.