What are garlic scapes? Garlic scapes are the tender stem and flower bud of a hardneck garlic plant. (Hardneck garlic is the kind of garlic that typically grows in Canada and the northeastern U.S., and we always plant multiple varieties of garlic on the chance of a really cold winter when Hardneck garlic thrives!) Scapes first grow straight out of the garlic bulb, then coil. When harvested, they look like long, curly green beans. They have an intense and fresh garlic flavor and are a special treat before garlic bulb harvest. You can use them in stir-fry or veggie dishes, or make a fabulous pesto!
- 4 cups fresh spinach
- 1 pound garlic scapes, cut into 1” pieces
- 1 ½ cups Parmesan cheese, finely grated
- 1 cup Fresh Harvest extra virgin olive oil
- ¼ cup cashew nuts (Optional)
A medium intensity EVOO works well in this recipe, or you can use our Basil olive oil for a more traditional tasting pesto. Blend spinach, garlic scapes, Parmesan cheese, olive oil, and pine nuts in a food processor until smooth. You can put the pesto in ice cube trays for easy storage in the freezer, but I’ve found the best way is to use small canning jars. Fill the pesto to nearly the top of the jar and cover with drizzles of extra virgin olive oil, then freeze. The oil keeps air out and the pesto fresh for up to 2 years.