Garlic scapes are in season. What, you may ask is a garlic scape, where do I get garlic scapes, and what do I do with them once I have them?
Garlic scapes are the stem and bud of the garlic plant. They need to be trimmed off before flowering, so all the plant’s energy goes to making awesome garlic bulbs. You can find them right now at farmstands, farmers’ markets, and CSAs. The recipe below is one of my favorite things to do with garlic scapes, but I have also been known to chop one or two up and toss them into a stirfry. They have a garlic flavor, without the garlic bite, very mild usually. The bottom 1/3 or so of the stem is too woody to eat, even after sauteing, so discard that part.
Garlic Scape and Goat Cheese Omelet
Olive oil or butter for pan
1 Garlic Scape, edible portion, chopped into small pieces
2 eggs, beaten well with fork or whisk
Salt (sea salt if you have it) and pepper (freshly ground if you have it)
2 tsp. goat cheese
Heat a small frying pan over medium heat. Add the oil or butter and heat. Add the garlic scape to the pan, and saute over medium heat until tender and fragrant. Add the eggs to the pan, gently stirring to evenly spread the garlic scape throughout if necessary. Let the omelet cook for a minute, setting up well around the edges.
Using a spatula, loosen the edges, and then the bottom of the omelet from the pan. If it is still a wee bit runny that’s okay. Sprinkle the omelet with salt and pepper, dollop little dollops of goat cheese around the omelet, and fold in half. Let cook briefly to let the cheese melt. Slide the omelet onto your waiting plate.
The egg will finish cooking on your plate if it was almost cooked in the pan. The cheese will be creamy and delicious, and the garlic scapes will have a little crunch to them, with a bit of mild garlic flavor.
If you find yourself with too many garlic scapes to use up in a week or two, chop them as you would for cooking, put them in a freezer bag, remove all the air, and freeze them. They keep really well this way so you can use them all year.