Sunday, June 23, 2013

The Great (GARLIC) ESCAPE! Part 1: Pesto

WTFCSA? Has been the cry (from home cooks) heard round the world (homes in zones 4 and 5) as CSA boxes have provided a bounty of garlic scapes the past two weeks. I was one of the yelpers. Garlic scapes are, well, the tops of garlic. They are long, strong, and  down to get the friction on. They smell... what's the word... garlicky. I was stumped. I enjoy researching new foods and recipes (recipe nerd) so I quickly hit the Googles and discovered an easy idea for a quick recipe - garlic scape pesto. I cobbled together the recipe on tried and true basil-based pesto recipes, so please feel free to go rogue and adjust to your personal tastes.

Garlic Scape Pesto

  • 10-12 garlic scapes (or 5-7 scapes with a handful of basil)
  • 1 Tablespoon walnut oil (olive will also work)
  • Half a lemon, squeezed (this is roughly 1 Tbs)
  • 2-3 Tbs Roasted pine nuts (you can roast them yourself in a small frying pan on Med)
  • Sea salt to taste
  • Freshly ground pepper to taste
  •  Optional: 2 -3 TBS grated Parmesan cheese to taste plus extra for toppings
  • RECOMMENDED: Unless you really, really, really, REALLY like garlic, add a handful of basil to the mix. I made it without and loved it - but my Das Wampyre husband said it was too much for him too handle, so I cut it the next time and we lived happily ever after (until the garlic scape dip incident the next day).

Combine all of that stuff I listed above in a food processor and blend until you achieve your personal fave pesto consistency. Taste and adjust along the way. You may want to add a little more oil or some water to adjust the consistency.

Serve over warm or chilled pasta! Top with grape tomatoes and more freshly grated cheese if desired. (It's also good on crackers or with crudite.)

A happy ending for all! More of a friendly warning - I literally reeked of garlic oozing out of my pores the next day. As a virtual hermit, it didn't effect the populace at large (or at small), but I am forewarning those of you who must (or care to) take into consideration the olfactory perceptions of others. ENJOY!

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