Thursday, May 26, 2011

Asparagus and Garlic Scape Stirfry

Asparagus and Garlic Scape Stirfry

A couple of weeks ago, I had a lovely Sunday afternoon wandering around the farmers market with JenFinn. I love visiting the market with her because we spend so much time there, I often find ingredients I've never used before. I've been visiting farmers markets for so long, I sort of have tunnel vision and only focus on what I need. Spending a little extra time can bring me new discoveries. In case you've never come across a garlic scape before it looks like this:

Garlic Scapes

Garlic scapes are the green stem that develop in the middle of a garlic bulb. When you cut into them they are just as fragrant as a clove of garlic, but without the sticky feeling. I wasn't quite sure about how to use them, but a fellow shopper suggested I try a stirfry. I saw many recipes for garlic scape pesto and pickled garlic scapes, but no stirfries so I had to come up with something on my own. The flavors here are simple and highlight the fresh vegetables. I prefer crisp, vibrant vegetables, but if you prefer yours softer (I'll try not to judge), try blanching the vegetables first or cooking them a little longer in the pan.

Asparagus and Garlic Scape Stirfry
(By Esi)

*Note, garlic scapes are quite fiborous in the thickest part. If you prefer a softer vegetable, try blanching them briefly before adding them to the stirfry or cooking them for a few minutes longer than the asparagus.

Makes 2 servings

1/2 teaspoon canola oil
1 small shallot, minced
20 thin asparagus spears, cut into 1-2-inch pieces on the diagonal
8 garlic scapes, cut into 1-2 inch pieces
1/2 teaspoon toasted sesame oil
1 teaspoon soy sauce
1/4 teaspoon honey
Pinch red pepper flakes
Toasted sesame seeds for garnish (optional)

In a large skillet or wok, heat the canola oil over medium-high heat. Add the shallot and cook until softened, 1 minute.

Add the asparagus and garlic scapes to the pan. Cook, tossing frequently, until the vegetables are cooked through, but still crisp, about 2-3 minutes. Stir in the sesame oil, soy sauce, honey, and red pepper flakes and toss to combine. Serve warm, garnished with sesame seeds if desired.

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Kelly said...

I'm so ready to start seeing these at the market. They just scream 'spring' to me. That and I love the flavor and have really become smitten with it. I love how they have all the garlic flavor but as I recall without the bite or maybe they are spicier than regular garlic. Ack, it's been too long and I cannot remember!

Erica said...

The garlic scapes are so pretty! I have a big bundle of asparagus on hand. I'm thinking a veggie stir fry is definitely in order

vanillasugarblog said...

finally had some of these and you were right, they are tasty--full of flavor. i wasnt sure (last year at this time but you were spot on).

Joanne said...

I loooveee garlic scapes but have never thought to stir fry them before! This sounds delicious and really lets their flavor shine!

Rachel said...

This looks like a great combo. I've seen garlic scapes around but have never tried them myself. This recipe is going on the list!

Banana Wonder said...

Loving these greens... don't let those garlics 'scape now!

LetMeEatCake Eat With Me! said...

i saw those at the market the other day and had no idea what they were. i'll pick some up on my next visit they sound good!

Diana said...

You found garlic scapes and saw Spencer all in one Farmers Market outing? Sounds like a productive Sunday.

I have to admit, I actually tend to like my vegetables a bit less... crisp. Will you still be my friend?

susan said...

Thanks, Esi - I learned something new! So simple, yet so sophisticated. I like it!

Simones Kitchen said...

I'd heard about garlic scapes before and would have loved to be able to find them anywhere here but have never seen them. Interesting item!

Maureen said...

I've never used them. I think back to all the ones I tossed in the compost heap! argh.. never again. I learn so much from everyone!

M. said...

so pretty! I've never heard of garlic scape, will have to look for it at my farmers market.

Alicia Foodycat said...

Asparagus and garlic - two of my favourite things!

Megan said...

this looks so good!

Mother Rimmy said...

Don't you just love farmers markets for cooking inspiration? I've never seen a garlic scape. Now I'll be on the lookout for them!