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Garlic scapes are the edible curly tops and seed pods of hard-necked garlic, which form in early summer. They have been around since man began cultivating garlic. They are milder than garlic and you can use then instead of garlic in any recipe.

Look for them fresh in specialty food stores or farmers markets. Unfortunately, most of the scape harvest is shipped to U.S. food terminals because Canadians don't know much about them. But that is starting to change.

Method

Sauté garlic scapes in olive oil until tender crisp. Season with salt, pepper and lemon juice. They taste similar to a garlicky green bean and are an excellent accompaniment for meat or chicken.

Finely chop and mix with bread crumbs, cheese and parsley as a stuffing for tomatoes and mushrooms.

Sauté in olive oil with sun-dried tomatoes and olives as a pasta sauce.

Chop finely and sauté in butter. Add to mashed potatoes with some cream for excellent garlic mashed potatoes.

Place scapes in foil, liberally sprinkle with olive oil, salt and pepper. Bundle up and grill for 10 minutes or until soft and golden.

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