Garlic season looms closer as our now tall, graceful alliums begin to put up their flowers! For those of you who are unfamiliar, garlic flowers are popularly known as "scapes", which grow out of the top of garlic plants like little curly-q's, or perhaps like pig-tails. Typically, scapes are prepared in raw recipes, such as pesto to which they frequently lend themselves; some folks cook them, lightly sauteeing them with butter or lightly pan- or oven-roasting....but over-cooking them can make them quite unpalatable. But it can be done! Stay tuned for some garlic scape recipes, one of which was contributed by a wonderful CSA member from last season!
We are also excited to bring to you, new this week: Sugar Snap Peas! 'Tis the season!
(*If the title of this newsletter confused you, no, we will not feature recipes of Garlic Scape Lemonade or Limeade beverages...that's a bit too experimental, even for us.)
On the table this week:
- Salad Mix
- Kale Bunch
- Head Lettuce
- Green Garlic
- Garlic Scapes
- Green Onions
- Sugar Snap Peas
*Special this week: CSA members get a discount on gourmet Oyster Mushrooms from Oak Savannah Mushrooms sold right at our table, next to your CSA buffet! $3 instead of $4 pints of the most beautiful mushrooms you'll ever see!
This time of year signifies somewhat of a shift in attitude and fluctuation for the Echollective. This week is our last week of picking asparagus so make sure you grab some for your CSA share this week! It'll be the last you get from us until next year. Other crops will soon follow suit, such as our salad mixes, although we are going to make a great effort this year to grow shade-cloth lettuce....we can't make any promises, but we hope to be able to provide you all with fresh, cool salads all summer long!
For the last couple months of summer, a lot of focus will be given to our alliums, which is a fancy-latin word for our onions, garlic, leeks, shallots, and green onions. We have already been dedicating a lot of time these past couple of weeks fighting off the weeds in our onion fields with all this rain, and were are quite positive that we will reap a considerable onion harvest, if all continues to go well! Cross your fingers for us. The recent rains have been super ideal for our alliums, although with a lot of rain and warmth come the weeds. So our energy has gone a lot towards weeding and protecting our crops, along with picking them, while the bulk of our summer planting is behind us (although we are still popping eggplants, lettuces, and peppers into the ground!).
And how could we not mention the Great Garlic Pull? It's not here yet....we have weeks worth of scapes to pick yet, but come July, we'll be pulling so much garlic that we'll be literally sitting in mountains of it. Literally.
Echollective will soon have to open its own fruit stand, because our fruit trees are almost exploding with fruit. Several apple and pear varieties have swelled due to all the rain and intermittent sunshine! We expect our black raspberry bushes out in the woods to be doing the same this year!
There's a lot to look forward to, and we hope you look forward to our big spread this week, and other delicious produce in the future. See you at market!
Garlic Scape Recipes
Following are a few garlic scape recipes, engineered by one of our very own CSA members, Elizabeth Hinds. Thanks Elizabeth!
Beef Stirfry (with garlic scapes)
- ½ cup garlic scapes, roughly chopped
- 1 med onion, halved and cut into 5mm slices
- 1 lb stew beef, marinated in red wine vinegar* for at least 30 mins
- ⅔ cup peas (fresh or frozen)
- ⅔ cup broccoli (fresh or frozen)
- ¼ cup shoyu (can use soy sauce)
- ¼ cup hoisin (also called Peking sauce)
- 1 tbsp raw sugar
- 3 tbsp butter
Melt the butter in a large wok and cook the onions over med-high heat until translucent, but still somewhat firm, about 5 minutes. Remove the onions, leaving as much butter in the wok as possible. Increase the temperature to high, add the meat (drain off most of the marinade first) and cook until just browned, about 2 minutes on each side. Remove the meat, leaving the juice, and add back the onions and other vegetables to cook for about 5 mins (if using frozen veg, add a few minutes for thaw time). Add back the meat and toss in the shoyu, hoisin sauce and sugar. Cook for 1 min, then serve over rice. Serves 3-4.
*note: I usually make my own red wine vinegar from leftover wine. In a large mason jar, add red wine and spike with 1 tbsp unpasteurized apple cider vinegar (Bragg’s works well). Cover with cheesecloth and screw on the band. Let sit on the counter for a couple of days before using and add red wine as available.
Garlic scape pesto
- ½ cup garlic scapes, roughly chopped
- ½ cup snow peas, roughly chopped
- 1 oz raw cashews
- 1 cup olive oil
- ⅓ cup grated parmesan
- 1 tbsp lemon juice
Pulse together the scapes, peas and cashews until they are chopped into small pieces. Add the olive oil, parmesan, lemon juice and a pinch of salt. Blend for about a minute, scraping down the sides as needed. Makes 2 cups.
Infused Olive oil
- 2 garlic scapes, cut to fit container and sliced in half lengthwise
- Sprig of rosemary
- 2 cups extra virgin olive oil
Wash the rosemary and garlic scapes and let dry completely before beginning (any water in the oil will encourage mold growth). Drop the scapes and rosemary into a clean, dry, sealable glass container (~16oz) and cover with the olive oil. Store in a cool, dry spot out of direct sunlight. Oil will be ready to use after about 2 weeks.
Spring vegetable soup
- 2 turnips, sliced into 4mm thick disks
- 2 radishes, sliced into 4mm thick disks
- bunch of spinach, stems removed
- ¾ cup barley
- 3 qts garlic scape vegetable broth
Cook the barley in the vegetable broth until tender, about an hour. Spread the turnips and radishes in a single layer on a baking sheet, drizzle with olive oil and sprinkle with salt and pepper. Roast at 400 degrees for 10 minutes. Add all of the vegetables to the broth and barley and cook for an additional 5 minutes. Add salt to taste. Serves 4-5.
Garlic Scape and Turnip Green Risotto
- ½ cup garlic scapes cut into 1cm rounds
- 1 cup arborio rice
- ½ cup dry white wine
- 4 cups vegetable broth
- 2 tbsp olive oil
- ¼ cup chopped fresh sage
- greens from 2 turnips, chopped medium
- ½ cup freshly grated parmesan
Bring the vegetable broth to a simmer in a separate pot. In a medium saucepan, saute the garlic scapes in olive oil until lightly browned. Add the sage, turnip greens and rice, tossing to coat. Cook for about 2 mins before adding the wine. After the wine is completely absorbed, begin to ladle in the hot broth, about ½ cup at a time, and stir until absorbed. Repeat this until all of the broth has been added, then stir in the parmesan just before serving. Serves 4.
Please tell us if you can't identify something on the market table, don't know what to do with a particular item, have a food allergy we should know about, or if you have other questions or comments. We love to hear from you!