While I was searching for ways to use the garlic scapes that I picked up on the weekend the one recipe that kept coming up was a garlic scape pesto. Given that I am a fan of garlic, a garlicky pesto sounded really good! I was a bit concerned though as I did read a few complaints from people that had tried the garlic scape pesto and found it to be too strong. As a test I tried eating some of the raw garlic scapes and although they were fairly strong they were good and I decided to forge ahead. When I took a bite out of the garlic scapes I noticed that they were a bit stringy so I decided to cut the scapes into little pieces before pureeing in the food processor in an attempt to keep the pesto nice and smooth. Other than that bit of chopping the pesto was really easy to make and the pine nuts, parmigiano reggiano, and olive oil mellowed out the raw garlicky flavour nicely. When I make pesto pastas I normally pour a some of the boiling water into a bowl, drain the pasta and put it right the now empty pot and add the pesto and some of the reserved pasta water. The combination of the hot pot and hot pasta water also worked to further mellow out the garlic flavour. In the end the garlic scape pesto was amazing! Given my slight reservations before making it I was a bit surprised and now the garlic scape pesto is my favorite pesto!
With all the thoughts about garlic floating through my head one thing that came to mind was a garlic scape garlic bread. Since I had used the last of my garlic scapes to make the garlic scape pesto I decided to make a garlic scape pesto garlic bread and I topped it with some more parmigiano reggiano and toasted it until the cheese was melted and golden brown. The cheesy garlic scape pesto garlic toast was so good and it went well with the pasta! What a great garlicky meal!
Garlic Scape Pesto
- 1 cup garlic scapes (sliced 1/4 inch thick)
- 2 tablespoons pine nuts (toasted)
- 1/4 cup parmigiano reggiano (grated)
- 3 tablespoons olive oil
- lemon juice to taste (optional)
- salt and pepper to taste
- Place everything into a food processor and blend.
Tip: If you find the garlic scapes to be too strong you can try blanching them before making the pesto to mellow out the flavour a bit.