I fooled him with soup. Soup always makes good use of excess vegetables and transforms them into something new. I’m not sick of garlic scapes just yet but I could already hear the groan of a certain family member’s thoughts of “what, again?” Ahem, you’re the one who planted so many. He loved the soup, and I told him it was garlic after all.
Like many vegetable soups, this is one that you just feel your way into it in terms of complementary ingredients, proportions and seasonings. I added a potato to the garlic scape base to give the soup body and a handful of green chard leaves (I could have used spinach) to lighten and brighten it. I used a combination of vegetable broth made with the garlic trimmings and chicken stock. And I found that this particular soup — because of the potato — needed ample salt, even though I garnished it with garlic scape pesto. (Off the subject, but BTW, if you ever over-salt soup or stew, toss in a potato and cook it for a while, since the potato will suck the salt from the water. Good little trick.)
The soup came together in under half an hour, and unlike most potato-based soups, was actually very good the next day.
Garlic Scape and Green Chard Soup
8 oz trimmed garlic scapes, cut into manageable lengths
1 tbsp butter or vegetable oil
8 oz floury potato, peeled and cut into big chunks
Approximately 4 c chicken stock or vegetable broth (add scape trimmings if making fresh)
2 large or 4 medium-small leaves of green chard (or spinach), stems removed, roughly chopped
Garnish: sour cream, garlic scape pesto (cut scapes whirred in food processor with olive oil and salt)
Place the garlic scapes and butter or oil in a medium-large saucepan and cook over medium-low heat for 2 minutes, stirring to coat the scapes. Add potatoes and stir to coat. Add the liquid (enough to cover), bring to a simmer, lower the heat slightly and cook, uncovered, until the potatoes and scapes are tender, about 20 minutes. Add the chard or spinach leaves and cook until they have just wilted but still hold their bright color.
Puree with an immersion blender or in a food processor. Adjust the level of liquid if needed and add salt to taste.
Serve hot, garnished with sour cream and garlic scape pesto.