If you have never tried fresh garlic scapes, you are missing something very tasty!
This time of year, garlic growers cut out the flowering stem from the growing garlic plants. And those stems are what we call garlic scales. Left on the plant, they would turn into flowers, and then seeds. Those stems would also prevent the garlic from forming big fat bulbs!
They are definitely worth searching for at your local market!
In addition to the fragrant garlic scapes I had also picked up some purple asparagus at the farmers market. We had been invited to a friends house for wine, appetizers and stimulating conversation. I wanted to bring something yummy, but also healthy and light.
This tatar, which is basically just a finely minced mixture of raw veggies was perfect for the occasion. If you can’t get garlic scapes, you could use green onions and a little fresh garlic, or garlic chives which are available at most Asian grocery stores where I live.
Here’s the recipe:
- 1 pound green or purple asparagus
- about 15 stems of garlic scapes
- 3 to 4 green onions
- a little salt and lots of freshly ground black pepper
- 3 tablespoons high quality olive oil or maybe a toasted nut oil
- freshly squeezed lemon juice
- sliced almonds, hazelnuts or sunflower seeds
Wash and trim the asparagus, garlic scapes and green onions.
Cut everything into smallish pieces and put them into the bowl of a food processor.
Pulse until everything is finely chopped.
Add the oil, salt, pepper, and some lemon juice.
Pulse again just to combine.
Taste and adjust seasoning.
Use this as a stuffing for raw baby bell peppers, drizzle it over pasta, pizza, Italian white beans or anything else that could use a little flavor burst! The garlic scapes taste like a mild, grassy garlic and would be tasty in just about any savory dish, both raw and cooked!