A single harvest crop, with a short season, garlic scapes punctuate the two May bank holidays and bring a fresh flavour to our plates and smiles to our faces. By mid to late June our entire crop has been devoured by; our own restaurant on the farm, professional chefs across the country and by home-cooks locally or purchased by farm shops and delis across the South of England.
It is not just the seasonality of garlic scapes that captures the interest of the chefs and cooks that are in tune with food rhythms, but also the 'nose-to-tail' nature of the product. By eating the stem of the plant as well as the bulb one avoids leaving the 'carcass' of the plant and focusing only on the 'prime cuts' of the cloves themselves. By cooking with garlic scapes, we double our enjoyment and the added bonus is that bulbs tend to increase in size whilst still in the ground for a few weeks after the scapes are harvested. This also helps us, the garlic farmers, as the crop is more sustainable, so thank you!
To recognize our gratitude for the enlightened and adventurous professional chefs and food enthusiasts who use our scapes and to spread awareness to yet more like-minded folk, we launched our Garlic Scapes Recipe Competition. The entries were judged by Josephine Boswell, an experienced festival & event caterer and garlic sister. Having served scapes by the bucket-load at Glastonbury and other shindigs, she knows… she just knows. Her criteria for measuring the submissions was as follows:
- Maximising scape flavour
AND THE WINNER IS….
1st Place - Oliver Gladwin, Stabbed elephant garlic scapes, lardo, Brocken hazlenuts, white balsamic butter dressing, shaved radish.
Many thanks to Andrew Stephen from The Sustainable Restaurant Association, which we are very proud to be members of, for coordinating this entry.
2nd Place - The Vegan Larder, Garlic scape skordalia with grilled scapes.
3rd Place - Sonia at Petitveg, Garlic scapes focaccia with smoked salt.
The original plan was to only list the winner but the team here were so impressed by the entries, many of which came from home-cooks. We've therefore listed a few extra above and have included the runner up below….
Runner Up - Where The Light Gets In, Garlic scapes with sheep's milk cheese curd.