Garlic lovers, this one is for you! While trying to come up with something creative to do with my garlic scapes, I came upon this recipe for a garlic scape pesto dip. This wasn’t exactly what I was after, but the “pesto” got me on the right track and I riffed a little and came up with the following. If you love rich garlic and basil pesto flavor, this dish will definitely satisfy!
Garlic Scape Pesto
Pasta or pierogies for four
1 bunch garlic scapes from your local box (or about 8-10 scapes)
20 large basil leaves
1/3 cup walnuts
2 tblspoons butter
½ cup shredded parmesan cheese
1 large tomato or 6 cherry tomatoes (or more if you like- this is what I had on hand)
¾ cup- 1 cup olive oil, as needed
salt to taste
1. Cook your pasta or your pierogies just before you prepare the sauce and have them on hand.
2. Toast your walnut pieces by placing them in a dry frying pan (I prefer non-stick for this) over medium heat and tossing frequently until toasted but not burnt, just a few minutes. Remove from pan and set aside.
3. Cut your scapes just enough to get them into your food processor, and process well, until the scapes are minced fine.
4. In a large saucepan, over medium heat, saute the minced garlic scapes in your 2 tablespoons of butter, stirring occasionally, for 5- 10 minutes, until tender and very fragrant.
5. While the scapes are sauteing, place your toasted walnuts, basil leaves, and parmesan cheese in your food processor. Turn it on and while the food is being processed, slowly add your olive oil until you get to the consistency of a thick soup or a runny paste. You may need to stop and check and test as you go along.
6. After the scrapes have been sauteing about five minutes, add your tomatoes, stir in well, and allow them to soften.
7. Add your pasta or pierogies to the scrapes and tomatoes, stirring fully and allowing the pasta to reheat.
8. When pasta is warmed through, spoon all of it, with all of the scrapes and tomatoes, into a very large bowl. Pour the basil/walnut mixture over the past and toss very well, allowing it to completely coat, and making sure the scrapes and the basil mix well. Serve immediately.
My husband, who can be quite particular about pasta sauces and the like, was very pleased with this and pointed out that all of these ingredients together would make a nice base for a tomato sauce as well, which I might try sometime soon. I hope you have a chance to make up this relatively simple, delicious dish and just be sure to have your toothbrush handy for afterward! Enjoy!
-Nicole Marsh-Mueller loves to cook locally and organically for her family and blogs at The Armchair Housewife
photo credit: Nicole Marsh-Mueller