The scape is the flower that emerges from the middle of the stalk. The theory behind harvesting them is that it forces the garlic to put its energy towards making a bigger bulb instead of making a flower.
I harvest mine when they start to curl themselves into a circle (see photo above). The longer you wait, the spicier and tougher the scapes become. I either snap them off by hand or use a knife to cut them.
Recipe by Bjorn Bergman (one of the ski trip members!)
Makes 1 ½ cups, or not quite two half pint jars
2 cups garlic scapes, roughly chopped
½ cup grated parmesan cheese
½ cup walnuts
Pinch of salt
Pinch of pepper
½ – ¾ cup of olive oil or sunflower oil
*Note: feel free to mix in other herbs like basil, mint, cilantro, parsley, or even kale, to make the pesto more mild. We love garlic, so we don’t mind the strong taste!
- Add garlic scapes, Parmesan, walnuts, salt, and black pepper to food processor and pulse until well blended.
- Turn processor on and slowly add ½ cup oil. Once added, stop the processor and scrape sides to make sure all ingredients are incorporated.
- Taste and adjust seasoning with salt and pepper.
- If pesto is too thick, add more oil while processor is running.
- Process pesto once more until it is creamy, about 1 minute.
- Load the pesto into your preferred containers and store in your chest freezer for up to a year.
I like to store mine in glass jam jars in my chest freezer. You can also freeze it into discs or ice cubes and then store in a freezer bag. Don’t forget to label the jar with the item and date. Frozen food is best if eaten within a year.