Scapes are the flower stalks found on all members of the Allium family (onions, leeks, chives, and garlic). Garlic scapes are a delicacy in some Asian cuisines and are available occasionally at farmer's markets as well as gourmet restaurants. If the scape is left on the plant it will harden and transform from green to the familiar opaque white/beige color of garlic peel. Keeping the shoot attached will curtail growth of the bulb. So, in an effort to allow the garlic to keep growing, the farmer picks the scape off the plant and we benefit with an edible delectable that cooks are just beginning to discover.
Storing / Preserving:
Garlic scapes will store well in a plastic bag in the refrigerator for at least 2 weeks.
Preparation / Use Suggestions:
Garlic scapes have a pleasant, subtle garlic taste and can be treated as a replacement for green onions, garlic, chives, or shallots in recipes you cook every day. Eat them raw or cooked. Just slice the beautiful curves (flower tops and all) into long wands or thin rounds and add them to a dish—just at the end, if you are cooking them. Too much cooking destroys the fresh flavor.
Try dicing scapes into scrambled eggs, adding to a veggie sauté or using as garnish for rice. However, the best way to understand the beauty of the scape is to pulverize them into pesto. Instead of pine nuts, you can use heart-healthy walnuts. The garlic flavor is fresh and light.