For the past few weeks we’ve almost had more garlic scapes than we can use. Almost. With each weekly handful, we’ve continued to find new and unusual ways to make the most of them while they’re still around. Like this recipe, that actually uses the tough (often inedible) portions of the scape as a skewer. Not sure if it actually infuses any garlic flavor into the meat, but it sure makes for a cool presentation. Besides, the meat itself gets plenty of flavor from the marinade, which is, like, totally herbaceous, dude. And pretty gosh darn delicious too. I can envision it being used on other meats or tofu for stellar results.
I do have to comment on the proliferation of beef in our diet recently (if you could call once every week or two a proliferation). I’ve never really trusted supermarket beef. We’ve gotten one too many wonky smelling steaks, and so we just stopped buying it. But then, a little while back, we discovered this farm. Walnut Hills. After seeing them for a few weeks in a row at the farmers’ market, we had to give it a try. Ever since, we’ve been ‘treating’ ourselves to a piece of beef every week or so, purchased directly from the farmers themselves. This is like the opposite of mystery meat. Grass fed. Local. Antibiotic and hormone free. And not wonky. The way beef should be.
For what it’s worth, because I know a fair share of vegetarians/vegans read this blog too… we’ve eaten vegan meals the past two nights. Granted, unintentionally, but we enjoyed it just as much as we did this satay. In fact, maybe I’ll just go ahead and post one of those vegan dishes next. Offset the meatiness. Because we really just aim to please… ourselves. Heh.
Makes 2-3 servings. Adapted from The Runaway Spoon.
6 garlic scapes
1 pound sirloin tips
1/2-inch piece of fresh ginger, peeled
Juice of one lime
1/2 cup cilantro leaves
10 mint leaves
10 basil leaves
1/4 cup soy sauce
3 tablespoons sesame oil
3/4 cup creamy peanut butter
1/4 cup coconut milk
2 tablespoon water
2 tablespoons fresh lime juice
2 tablespoons soy sauce
1 teaspoon fish sauce
1 teaspoon hot sauce
1 teaspoon minced fresh ginger root
2 cloves garlic, minced
2 tablespoons chopped fresh cilantro
1/4 cup chopped peanuts, for garnish (optional)
Make scape skewers by cutting off the woody bottoms (typically the straight portion of the scape). Trim the ends into sharp points. Set aside.
Cut three of the scape tops and the ginger into small pieces and drop in a blender or food processor. Add the lime juice, cilantro, mint and basil leaves and the soy sauce. Blend until a rough paste forms. Depending on how woody your scapes are, this may take a little while. With the blender running, drizzle in the sesame oil and blend until smooth. Pour the marinade into a ziptop bag and add the beef cubes. Seal the bag and shake to coat. Refrigerate for at least 30 minutes or up to several hours, turning periodically.
To prepare the peanut sauce, cut the remaining three scapes tops into small pieces and add to the food processor with other ingredients. Blend until smooth. Transfer to a small bowl or serving dish and set aside. If it makes too much sauce for you, you can freeze a portion of it to use another time.
Heat a heavy cast iron skillet or grill pan over medium-high heat. Thread 4-5 pieces of the beef onto each skewers. If needed, you can cut a small slit in each beef chunk to slide the skewer through. Cook the skewers until the beef is cooked through, about 10 minutes total, rotating as needed for even cooking.
Top skewers wtih peanut sauce and garnish with chopped peanuts, if desired.