Yay! I’ve finally gotten around to walking the 3 blocks to the Mt. Pleasant farmers market. While the market is still gearing up for its summer crops (cue tomatoes, peppers and blackberries) the vendors are currently pimping a mix of salad greens, strawberries and garlic scapes. I’ve read about garlic scapes, but hadn’t seen them in the flesh before. Well, with limited options of experimenting from the market this weekend, I went for a the scapes spiral.
Here’s a quick Scapes 101 from KOD:
Here’s the anatomy lesson: Garlic and its relatives in the allium family, (leeks, chives, onions) grows underground, where the bulb begins its journey, soft and onion-like. As the bulb gets harder (and more like the garlic we know), a shoot pokes its way through the ground. Chlorophyll- green like a scallion (maybe even greener), the shoot is long and thin and pliable enough to curl into gorgeous tendrils.
This stage of growth is the garlic scape, folks. If left unattended, the scape will harden and transform from green to the familiar opaque white/beige color of garlic peel. Keeping the shoot attached will also curtail further growth of the bulb. So, in an effort to allow the garlic to keep growing, the farmer is getting a two-fer with this edible delectable that cooks are just beginning to discover.
I started my scape adventure in the form of breakfast, and I was especially excited because I was also cooking for my old housemate Julie. She suggested Subway for brunch but as soon as I said I would cook she knocked on my apartment door in 15 minutes (coffee in hand for me; Coke in hand for 80).
So the scapes.
Scrambled Eggs with Spinach and Garlic Scapes
I chopped the garlic scapes like I would a scallion. Tossed them on a heated pan with extra virgin, but left them on a wee too long and they started to brown/burn. After inspecting them — touching, smelling, eating — I decided I needed to chuck the bitter first round. And I hate admitting to failure.
I started over, chopping them the same but lowering the heat, stirring constantly and then adding in chopped fresh spinach. When the spinach slightly wilted I removed both greens from the pan. I then threw in a touch of butter to the same pan and started to scramble eggs. When they were about 70% done I reintroduced the greens, along with scant amount of diced roasted red pepper, a spoonful of sour cream (not a usual in my eggs, but I wanted to get rid of it and frankly, I’m not even sure I could taste it,) salt and pepper. Once served, I sprinkled queso freso on top of the eggs along with a side of whole wheat toast with a generous pad of Kerrygold Irish butter. The hype is true.
Editors Note: I promise a scape centric pic from 80P later this week. I swear, the scapes are in the scramble!