Quick Tip: Using Those Tasty Scape Buds

Just in case you're still finding scapes at your local market, my mother has a tip for you that she recently learned. In brief, she says, "Eat your scape buds!"

My mother had no idea what to do with the scapes she found in her CSA, or even what they were. The farmer running her CSA explained what they were (the pruned flower stalks from growing garlic plants), and gave her some pointers for cooking with them.

"And the flower bud?" he said, pointing to the whitish bulge just before scape tapers off, "Crack that open and sprinkle the seeds on a salad. You'll like it!"

Now, I've added scapes to stir fries, mashed them into pestos and dips, and even nibbled them raw, but I have never heard of doing anything special with that seed bud. My mom dutifully cracked a few open while she was cooking and said they taste exactly how you'd imagine: like mild, garlicky seeds.

Whisked into a vinaigrette or sprinkled directly over the salad, these add just a touch of garlicky flavor. I also like the idea of adding them to an olive oil dip for bread or dropping them onto a freshly grilled fish filet or sizzling steak.

Scape season is long past where I live, but you can bet I'll be saving this idea all year until they're back!

Have you ever done this with scapes?

Related: NY Times Sunday Magazine: How to Cook with Green Garlic

(Image: Flickr member elisfanclub licensed under Creative Commons)

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