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Sounds strange, tastes divine. Garlic scapes taste like a blend of onion, scallion and garlic. Garlic scapes offer less of the fiery garlic taste and have a fresher, “greener” taste. Imagine a flavor mashup of garlic and chives, with an asparagus-like texture, and that’s a garlic scape.
Garlic scape tendrils are curly and bright green with a tiny, yellowish-white bulb at the base. This is the unopened flower of the plant. Garlic scapes are available for a very short season from the end of May to early July. They’re harvested and ready to eat immediately, so there’s nothing standing between you and delicious springtime garlic scapes!
These greens are the stem and flower bud of a hardneck garlic plant (Allium sativum). Scapes grow from the garlic bulb then coil and look like long, curly green beans. They are generally 12 to 18 inches long with a quarter-inch diameter. The curly garlic scape tendril and the bud, the yellowish white bulge, are edible. Consume the entire scape, or you can discard the bud depending on your preference..
Ramps, also called wild leeks, can sometimes be confused with garlic scapes because they’re also available in early spring. However, ramps are their own plant (unlike scapes, which grow from a garlic plant).
Garlic scapes are a good source of protein, vitamin C, and calcium and, like garlic cloves, can help to prevent heart disease, high cholesterol, high blood pressure, and cancer. They can also provide immune system support and reduce inflammation.
Over at FruitStand, we love them so much that count the days until garlic scape season. We want you to enjoy them just as much as we do. Here are the most common ways to prepare garlic scapes for just about any recipe.
Garlic scapes can be used in anything you would normally eat with garlic, chives or scallions. Pesto, guacamole or everyday chicken recipes will take on a new dimension with garlic scapes.
- Dice up garlic scapes with a sharp knife as you would chives. In order to chop garlic scapes safely, hold garlic scapes in a bunch and place on a clean cutting board. With a sharp knife chop garlic scapes to desired size.
- Garlic scapes take beautifully to many different cooking methods including sautéing, braising, roasting, and grilling.
- Try pickling and fermenting your garlic scapes for a treat you’ll look forward to.
Here are some easy ways use garlic scapes in your drinks:
- Juicing: If you’re a next-level juicer who isn’t afraid of a clove of garlic or two, try swapping these in for a greener, more mild garlic flavor and an extra dose of nutrients to your vegetable juices.
- Shrubs: To make delicious alcoholic and non-alcoholic beverages, use your garlic scapes to make a shrub, then add it to your drinks.
- To store garlic scapes, bundle them together with a rubber band and store in an airtight bag in the refrigerator for up to 3 weeks.
- Garlic scapes can be chopped, placed in a freezer-safe bag and stored frozen for up to one year.
- Fermentation and pickling methods will give you more time to enjoy these garlicy, short-seasoned delicacies.
- If you plan on eating them within 1-2 days, make a bouquet of garlic scapes in a vase of fresh water. Leave on your counter at room temperature and change water daily.