I must start with an apology. This recipe is out of season, and you will not be able to find even one garlic scape again until June, which is nearly a year from now. But when you do - when you see them, in all their twisty, curly, fabulous glory, perhaps you'll remember that you DO know what to do with them, and that a quick visit back to this blog post will remind you. Or, if you are tremendously well organized, you could print this all out now, and save it in your "recipes to try in June 2011" folder. In the case that you have such a system in place.
Last year, there were garlic scapes in my CSA box. I must admit that I found them later in the summer (maybe around now, even, late August or so), all sad and dead and smushy on the bottom of my vegetable drawer. This year, when the garlic scapes arrived, I benefited from (believe it or not) my somewhat recent affiliation with the world of twitter. That's a separate topic entirely, but for our purposes let's just say that twitter is an online service that allows people to quickly and easily share information with one another. And in this case, it allowed the bloggers over at Serious Eats to share this brilliant blog post with me, in very timely fashion:The Crisper Whisperer: Seven Things to do with Garlic Scapes.
I was intrigued by the concept of garlic scape pesto, particularly when it was presented with such enthusiasm: Far and away my favorite use for garlic scapes is pesto, either straight-up or mixed with herbs like basil and dill. Pesto showcases raw scapes in all their glory.
I stuck to the recipe very precisely, and I followed her suggestion to freeze it in small batches, to enjoy through the winter... but it's so delicious that I have already used one of the frozen rations.So far, I've been eating it on cheese tortellini, and that has worked out quite well.
Garlic Scape Pesto
1/4 cup toasted pine nuts
3/4 cups coarsely chopped garlic scapes (or 1/2 and 1/2 with basil or dill)
juice and zest of 1/2 lemon
1/2 tsp salt
freshly ground pepper
Blend into that mixture:
1/2 cup extra virgin olive oil
Mix with a generous amount of freshly grated parmesan and stir directly into hot pasta. I divided this batch into four smaller batches, and froze three of them. Keep in mind that the parmesan should be added as you stir it into the hot pasta - which is to say that it shouldn't be mixed into the pesto before freezing.