Tuesday, June 30, 2009


When I asked the guy at the produce stand at the farmers' market if it was ok for me to take a picture of the garlic scapes he told me it was fine. Actually he said something more to the effect that he wouldn't ask them to sign a waiver. After I took the picture he wanted to take a look and then he asked me what I did with them. I told him I made them into a pesto. He said he used them in mashed potatoes and then we talked pesto. He asked me how the garlic scape pesto was different from regular pesto. I talked about the garlickyness of the scapes so then he asked how it was different than regular garlic.
What? A garlic pesto? Who's this crazy man?
I struggled and said something about how it would be more green a couple of times, more green, a green fluorescent color, as if that said everything about how it would taste. The taste of chlorophyll.
Actually, I had never thought to make a garlic pesto. When you say pesto it's usually taken to mean basil, olive oil, pine nuts, Parmesan cheese, salt, pepper and maybe a clove or two of garlic. Could be something else green but that only if you were cutting edge crazy like I thought I was. I had ventured into arugula, kale and scapes (not a fan of onion scape pesto). And here was this guy suggesting it could be bone white. I considered and decided to give it a go.
Later I found out that the word pesto comes from the Italian for pound, crush. I made pestos with both.
They were both spicy though the garlic pesto was hotter, the bring tears to your eyes kind of spicy, it would be perfect spread onto toasted bread or with a rare steak. It didn't taste quite as...green. I like the taste of green so will take the scape route while they're in season.

1 comment:

Greg said...

Oh, Synchronicity!

I'd never heard of garlic scapes, nor pesto made with them until hanging with my visiting friends, just last week. (Were you at their farmer's market in Saranac Lake?!)

It's funny how we get an idea in our heads and I'd gotten myself locked into the idea of what I thought pesto should be, never thinking to equate the word with the mortar and pestle (pestel?), which must derive similarly.

I'll have to try some. Sounds yummy.