The garlic plants have put on little wispy elf hats. Each of these whimsical additions curls downward on a long, thin stem emerging from the center of the leaf stalk, a sure sign that the garlic will be ready to harvest in a few weeks.

In truth, these are garlic scapes, the flowering stalks that appear on hardneck garlic, such as the Chesnok Red variety I am trying this year. Pulling the scapes – a firm, steady tug detaches them from the rest of the plant with a satisfying pop! – encourages the plants to put more energy into bulb production rather than the flowers. And then we get to eat these springtime delicacies.

Much like a garlicky green onion, garlic scapes can be added to salad, stir-fry, quiche, soup, or even garlic scape pesto. Really, anywhere that you would use garlic or green onions, you can use garlic scapes. Just give them a rinse, trim off the bud end (or “elf hat”), and chop up the rest of the stem, or thinly slice them to use raw.

If you’d like to give them a try, I’ll have bundles of garlic scapes for sale at the Broadway Community Market this Saturday, 8am-noon! I’ve also been picking lots of sugar snap peas this week, and I still have plenty of sweet, crisp head lettuce and tender kale. Of course, you will also find garlic salt, aloe plants, and crocheted items on my table.

Keep an eye on the Broadway Community Market Facebook page for details about an upcoming giveaway opportunity! Each purchase made at the market during the month of June will enter you to win some fantastic prizes from Fairydiddle Farm and other vendors.

See you at the market!

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

You may use these HTML tags and attributes:

<a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <s> <strike> <strong>