Grilled Garlic Scape and Asparagus Soup with Caramelized Shallots

Grilled Garlic Scape and Asparagus Soup with Caramelized Shallots l Gluten-Free and Vegan l www.stephinthyme.com

This past week marked the start of our very first Community Supported Agriculture (CSA) summer farm share. I’ve been wanting to sign up for a CSA for years – I love the idea of supporting a local farm and getting fresh, seasonal produce straight from the source. We found a farm this year with a convenient pickup location and signed right up for a share of their summer crops.

From June through November, we’ll receive a box of fresh fruits and vegetables from Enterprise Farm, one of the longest-running certified organic farms in Massachusetts. I’m giddy just thinking about it.

Grilled Garlic Scape and Asparagus Soup with Caramelized Shallots l Gluten-Free and Vegan l www.stephinthyme.com

Among all the leafy greens included in this week’s share was a half pound of garlic scapes. Garlic scapes – like fiddlehead ferns – are a springtime treat in New England.

Garlic scapes are thick-stemmed curlicues that grow from the root of a hard-necked variety of garlic. They are the shoots of the garlic bulb, harvested in spring and early summer so they don’t drain all the nutrients and flavor from the garlic bulb, which will be dug up later in the season.

These scapes have a mild and sweet garlic aroma and flavor. You can prepare them in ways similar to green onions, or get creative with a scape-based pesto and hummus.

Grilled Garlic Scape and Asparagus Soup with Caramelized Shallots l Gluten-Free and Vegan l www.stephinthyme.com

I’ll eat soup any time of year – cold weather or not. There’s something about curling up with a bowl of soup and a good book, even on a warm summer evening, that makes my heart feel full with the essence of “home.”

Even though it’s just CJ and myself in our new house, I typically make a big pot of soup that serves 8-10 to feed us during the week and to have on hand in the freezer. It helps that I also adore leftovers.

Grilled Garlic Scape and Asparagus Soup with Caramelized Shallots l Gluten-Free and Vegan l www.stephinthyme.com

I paired the farm fresh garlic scapes with a pound of green asparagus for this creamy, yet light, summertime soup.

Because it’s officially summer, I grilled the asparagus and scapes with olive oil, salt, and pepper then blended in vegetable broth simmered with bay leaf and a hint of red pepper flakes.

Alternatively, you can sauté the scapes and asparagus instead of grilling. But if you have a grill, I recommend uncorking a bottle of wine and firing it up.

Grilled Garlic Scape and Asparagus Soup with Caramelized Shallots l Gluten-Free and Vegan l www.stephinthyme.com

The garlic scapes balance the bright, yet subtly earthy asparagus with a garlicky sweetness. The red pepper flakes add a layer of heat and zing, and the sweetness of the maple caramelized shallots finish off the soup with a deep richness that doesn’t overpower the other flavors.

As a vegetarian option, you can add a swirl of crème fraîche. Crispy, garlic croutons would make a tasty garnish as well.

The soup is silky smooth, but still has texture from the heartiness of the grilled asparagus and scapes. Each ladle filled with the warmth and green of summer. 

Grilled Garlic Scape and Asparagus Soup with Caramelized Shallots l Gluten-Free and Vegan l www.stephinthyme.com

I would love to hear from you. Are you participating in a CSA summer farm share this year? What is your favorite summertime vegetable?

For more food related fun, and to see what’s cooking up in my kitchen, follow me on:
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Grilled Garlic Scape and Asparagus Soup with Caramelized Shallots
 
Prep time
Cook time
Total time
 
A light gluten-free and vegan summertime soup with grilled garlic scapes, asparagus, and caramelized shallots.
Author:
Serves: 8 servings
Ingredients
  • 1 lb fresh asparagus, washed, ends trimmed, cut into 1" long pieces
  • ½ lb fresh garlic scapes, washed and cut into 1" long pieces
  • 1 tbsp + 1 tsp olive oil, divided
  • 6 cups vegetable broth
  • 1 bay leaf
  • ¼ tsp red pepper flakes (or less, per preference)
  • 4 shallots, thinly sliced
  • 1 tsp real maple syrup
  • salt and pepper, to taste
Instructions
  1. Heat the grill on high for 10 minutes. In a large bowl, drizzle 1 tbsp olive oil over asparagus and garlic scapes. Season generously with salt and pepper. Toss until coated.
  2. Place the asparagus and garlic scapes in a grilling veggie basket (or, grill whole and slice into 1" pieces afterward). Place the veggie basket in the center of the grill, then close the grill lid. Cook for about 20 minutes, tossing occasionally, until the vegetables are tender and can be easily pierced with a fork.
  3. While the vegetables are grilling, combine the vegetable broth, bay leaf, and red pepper flakes in a large stock pot. Bring to a boil, then continue to simmer until the vegetables are done grilling.
  4. In a medium saute pan, heat remaining 1 tsp olive oil over medium-high heat. Add the thinly sliced shallots and cook for 5-7 minutes until softened and begin to turn golden brown. Stir in the maple syrup and cook for an additional 2-3 minutes, until brown and caramelized.
  5. When the vegetables are done grilling, add them to the stock pot of broth. Bring to a boil and cook 1-2 minutes more. Remove pot from heat. Remove bay leaf from the broth and discard.
  6. With an immersion blender - or with a regular blender working in batches - blend the soup until it's smooth. Season with additional salt and pepper, to taste.
  7. Divide soup into large bowls and top with a spoonful of caramelized shallots. Serve immediately.

 

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Comments

  1. says

    I love garlic Scapes and am always disappointed that the season for them is sooo short. I like using the scapes in a ceasar style salad dressing. Your soup looks fantastic.

    • says

      They are pretty cool looking, I was excited when I got them in my CSA! If you can’t find garlic scapes, I’ve read that chives and garlic are a good replacement. I suggest mincing 2-3 cloves of garlic and cooking in dash of olive oil until fragrant, then add to the simmering vegetable broth. I would also add chopped chives to the broth rather than grilling them (a good amount, starting with 3/4 cup). If you try it, let me know how it goes!

  2. says

    I used to get garlic scapes in my old CSA … I think I’ll have to get to the farmers’ market soon to get some because this soup looks and sound amazing!

    P.S. I love that bowl … so pretty!

  3. says

    I found your site via Food Bloggers Central and LOVED it! I work for a foodtech company called Chicory that work with a lot of food bloggers and would like to invite you to join our partner team. Are you interested?

  4. says

    I have never cooked with garlic scapes – I’ve always been intrigued though! I need to look for them. I love the flavors going on in this soup and the caramelized shallots really take it to the next level!

    • says

      Thank you! I really love anything caramelized – simple, flavorful, but gourmet looking! Hope you are able to find scapes near you – let me know if you do!

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