When a garlic bulb matures and sends up a stalk for a flower with the goal of reproducing, the flavorful shoot is called the scape. Garlic scapes are abundant this time of year, but have a very short season. So when you’ve had enough of adding them to your stir-fries, a quick way to preserve the scape season is to freeze pureed scapes. The frozen paste can be thawed to make a delicious scape pesto, used as a rub for a roast, or as the base for a sauce for pasta or potatoes. Substituting garlic scape puree for garlic can add a little zing to any dish.
Making the puree is super easy. Chop of the flower head from the scapes and puree the stalks in a food processor until smooth. Spoon puree into small to medium size containers. Fill containers to the top because you don’t want any air to cause freezer-burn. Date and freeze.
Last week when I was in a rush to get dinner on the table, I substituted the scape puree for basil pesto on a pizza. I drizzled the pre-cooked pizza crust with olive oil and spread the puree over the crust. Then I added chopped sun-dried tomatoes and feta cheese and heated it up for about 10 minutes. Everyone loved the unique flavor combination, and the garlic had enough zip to be interesting.
You can take it one step further and make pesto by adding nuts and cheese to the food processor. You can find an Everyday Chef post about Garlic Scape Pesto here.