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I planted lots of garlic last fall—four garlic varieties and so much that I need another raised bed or two to fit my other veggies. I like to grow garlic because many of the recipes I use to make sauces and dressings, and other tasty dishes calls for it. Another reason is that garlic provides two harvests: the delightfully loopy garlic scapes and, of course, the cloves.
Depending on where you live, garlic scapes are coming into season right about now. If you didn’t plant any yourself, keep an eye out for them at local farmers’ markets. My scapes have been appearing in batches, which is handy because it means I get to enjoy them for longer.
Garlic scapes are delicious when roasted with potatoes or other veggies. My favourite way to eat scapes is to make them into a pesto. I’ve adapted this garlic scape pesto recipe from a few that I’ve discovered over the years. I whip it into pasta mixed with sausage and sautéed mushrooms or other stir-fried veggies. I’ve added less oil and used it as a sandwich spread. And, when I make too much to enjoy at once, I freeze it into ice cubes so I can enjoy fresh pesto throughout the summer.
Note: Be sure you have a toothbrush or a good helping of mints close at hand after eating a garlic scape-laden meal!
Garlic scape pesto
- 8 to 10 garlic scapes
- ½ cup olive oil (more if you’d like a more liquid consistency, less if you prefer it more crumbly)
- 2 tbsp lemon juice
- ⅓ cup of sunflower seeds (optional, but I enjoy the nutty flavour they add)
- Sea salt to taste
- Grated parmesan cheese (to taste) Note: if you’re freezing your pesto, do not add the cheese. It doesn’t freeze well.
How to make it:
Place the scapes, lemon juice, sunflower seeds and sea salt in a food processor and blend until smooth. Gradually add the olive oil.
How do you enjoy eating garlic scapes?