Posted by: locaphile | June 20, 2011

Pickled Garlic Scapes

Garlic scapes are truly beautiful in the garden this time of year.  They support the flower heads of hard-necked garlic and are a foodie delight all by themselves.  In past years we have made a delicious garlic scape pesto.  This year we seemed to have a extra so we thought we would try pickling them.  It turns out that there weren’t as many as we thought but by then I had already committed to the pickle experiment.  OK, so for all the fuss, we ended up with only one jar of pickled garlic scapes…

When I first looked at garlic scapes I thought that it would be the flower bud that was the edible part.  In fact, the flower bud turns out to be incredibly tough and mostly inedible.  It is the stem that you pull up out of the centre of the garlic that is lovely and tender and (very) flavourful.  I ended up pickling mostly the scapes but also some of the smaller flower heads as they looked pretty.

I scaled the pickling brine down from this recipe: 1 pound or more of scapes, whole. 3 cups vinegar. 5 cups water. ¼ cup kosher salt. A Fresh Basil Leaf at the bottom of each jar. A pinch Chili Flakes for each jar.  Placed into sterilized jars, sealed and then cooked in a boiling water bath for 45 minutes.

The few remaining scapes were incorporated into the Pasta Carbonara and enjoyed as the evening meal.  Yum.


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