So unbeknownst to me, it is pronounced garlic “sk-ape” not “sk-ape-ee”. A sk-ap-ee pesto sounds about as appetising as a bowl full of punches. Garlic scapes are the first harvest of the garlic plant (the second being the garlic bulbs themselves) and offer a flavour that resembles scallions and garlic combined. Yum!
“Garlic scapes, a member of the allium family, have similar health properties to garlic itself. Current research strongly supports the role of garlic in enhancing immune function and improving health.”
Garlic scapes are best enjoyed mid-June, just in time for summer. Our CSA (Community Supported Agriculture) fruit and vegetable box takes the thinking out of seasonal eating, and this month garlic scapes are on the menu. Aside from pesto, other ways to enjoy garlic scapes include sautéing them with garlic and olive oil, adding to Asian dishes in place of scallions (green onions), or simply grilling or pickling them. Garlic scape pesto is a favourite way to use this abundant crop. By sautéing the scapes beforehand it helps to lessen the sharp garlic taste, though some people may prefer to use raw garlic scapes.
Garlic Scape Pesto Stuffed Mushrooms with Goat Cheese
- 1 tbsp olive oil extra virgin
- 1/3 cup olive oil extra virgin
- 10 garlic scapes
- 1/3 cup walnut halves
- 1/3 cup parmesan cheese grated*
- 12 cremini mushrooms organic (or 4 large portobello)
- 80 g goat cheese organic
- sea salt
- black pepper ground
- Preheat oven to 450 degrees Fahrenheit or 230 degrees Celsius.
- Chop the garlic scapes into 2" pieces. Heat 1 tbsp. of olive oil over medium-high heat in a frying pan. Add the garlic scapes and sauté for 2-3 minutes to help soften the flavour. Season with salt and pepper. Set aside and let cool.
- Once the garlic scapes have cooled, add to a food processor along with the parmesan cheese and walnuts. Processes until well blended, then begin to add the olive oil slowly. Blend until desired consistency. Taste and season as necessary, set aside.
- Clean the mushrooms by wiping with a damp paper towel. Remove the stems. Take 3-4 stems and finely dice them. Add the diced stems back into the bottom of the mushroom, to fill in the hole left by the removed stem. *Save the rest of the stems to add to your next stirfry.
- Next, arrange the mushrooms bottom side up onto a parchment paper lined baking tray. Add about 1/2 tbsp. of pesto to each mushroom cap, spread evenly to cover. You will have some pesto left. It can be saved in the fridge for about 7 days; toss it through your next pasta or have it on toast.
- Divide the goat cheese amongst the 12 mushrooms (or 4 large mushrooms). Option to drizzle some additional olive oil over the mushrooms. Place the tray in the pre-heated oven. Cook for about 20 minutes. Enjoy!
Rachel Dickens, The Conscious Dietitian, is a Registered Dietitian and Certified Diabetes Educator. She graduated with her Masters in Nutrition and Dietetics in 2010 from Griffith University. She strives to provide evidence-based nutrition information with a focus on plant-based nutrition, and share some of her favourite seasonal recipes and sustainable eating tips.