It’s now halfway through the 10 Day Sprouting Challenge and I have to say, it’s been easy; because when you consider the other methods of sprouting, as in with the mason jar and the effort and babysitting required, having only to water my sprouts twice a day is the raw foods equivalent of “set it and forget it“!
From the moment I started the challenge I was already brainstorming ways to incorporate my sprouts into recipes, in a way that would be entry level for the newbie sprouters among us; so when I was on my weekly farmer’s market shop, and saw the beauty that are garlic scapes looking up at me for the low price of $2 for a giant bunch, I knew that somehow garlic scapes would find their way onto my plate- and this site!
So why is the everyone all a twitter about garlic scapes? Easy, because they are the perfect marriage between garlic and scallions. Now, don’t get me wrong, garlic scapes are 100% garlic but not the bulb; they are the immature flowering stalks of what we know as garlic, and have the same health benefits without all the sass.
Let’s rap about health benefits. Garlic is renowned for being antifungal and antibacterial; and garlic is a potent digestion system aid and immune booster, helping the body to eliminate unwanted toxins. As with most foods, cooked garlic doesn’t provide the same amount of potent vitamins and minerals, which, when you are considering eating the bulb of garlic raw proves challenging; however, because of the mild flavor profile of garlic scapes, eating them raw doesn’t seem like quite as much of a dare but, rather, an enjoyable experience.
You’re probably wondering “why am I just now hearing about garlic scapes?” And I’ll be honest, I felt the very same way when I discovered these gems; and, simply put, chefs we’re keeping this secret to themselves, but now that garlic scapes are so widely available at markets, everyone has jumped on the garlic scapes bandwagon.
Garlic scapes are so mild and subtle that I knew that they would offer some lightness to the depth of earthy flavor that characterizes mung bean sprouts; and because this pesto is raw AND sprouted, it’s pretty much one of the most life giving foods you can eat. As with any pesto, the herb you choose is completely up to you; I used Moroccan Mint because it was at the market and I LOVE mint, but should you hate mint and love basil, go ahead and make your day!
There are many ways to use garlic scapes, sprinkled over salad, in an omelette, and in various sauces; because of garlic scapes half scallion half garlic nature, you can substitute it for either in recipes- so many options, so please don’t limit yourself!
Sprouted Mung Bean and Garlic Scapes Pesto? Uh…yes please!
2 tbsp raw pumpkin seeds, soaked 30 minutes and drained
2 heaping tbsp sprouted mung bean sprouts
1/3 cup garlic scapes
1 1/2 tbsp Moroccan Mint
1/2 tsp salt
1/4 tsp pepper
4 tbsp olive oil
2 tbsp coconut vinegar
Combine all ingredients in a food processor and blend until desired consistency is achieved. For a raw spread, blend until incorporated but still chunky; for a pasta pesto sauce, blend until smooth.