Garlic Scape Basil Pesto

Garlic Scape Basil Pesto | Pumpkin Honey

How wonderful is seasonal produce? It’s fresh, vibrant, and you can find it locally. The basil in this pesto came from the farmer’s market this morning. And the garlic scapes came in an organic box from Washington Green Grocer. WGG is like an interesting spin on the CSA (community supported agriculture). While not all of their produce is organic or local (or even national), a large portion is and you can order a local or organic box. And they deliver it to your door. Plus they’re very flexible about swaps and they offer a lot of add-ons. It’s really an excellent service that provides excellent products. For most, I definitely advocate using a traditional CSA that comes from an organic farm nearby and buying from local, producers-only farmer’s markets. However, if this is not an option (i.e. if it’s the middle of the season, no farms nearby, no sustainably grown produce, etc.) a group like Washington Green Grocer is a great alternative. They also have an excellent web design that’s easy to use and have a blog with recipe suggestions! I also hear Hometown Harvest is a good organization in the MD area with a similar model.

Garlic Scape Basil Pesto | Pumpkin Honey

This pesto is everything you want in your pesto.

There’s the traditional basil, the fun of garlic scapes, and the flavor enhancers: red pepper flakes for a kick & red wine vinegar for a tiny little punch.

Garlic Scape Basil Pesto | Pumpkin Honey

 Key is high quality produce. You could smell this basil across the kitchen. And the scapes were nice and firm.

Garlic Scape Basil Pesto | Pumpkin Honey

YUM.

Garlic Scape Basil Pesto | Pumpkin Honey

Garlic Scape Basil Pesto | Pumpkin Honey

Garlic Scape Basil Pesto

1 Large Bunch Basil (About 2 Cups Loosely Packed)
5 Large Garlic Scapes
1/4 Cup Pine Nuts
1/4 Cup Walnuts
1/4 – 1/3 Cup Olive Oil
1 Tsp Red Wine Vinegar
Pinch of Red Pepper Flakes
1/2 Tsp Salt (To Taste)

Chop the thick end and the seed head off of the garlic scapes and throw in the food processor. Puree until coarsely ground. Add the rest of the ingredients and purée until smooth. Adjust to taste, adding more olive oil/salt/vinegar/cheese if you desire.

Spread on sandwiches or pizza, stir into pasta, or nosh with a spoon. However you eat it, you’ll love it.

And you’ll see what I do with it soon!

Garlic Scape Basil Pesto | Pumpkin Honey

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Echo Hill <3

If you’ve read any of my older posts you know I’m obsessed with a Mennonite owned Dry Goods store in a small town called Fleetwood, PA. Echo Hill may just be one of my favorite places on Earth. When Stephen’s mom suggested he take me there my first time in Kutztown, I was crazy excited. Their pantry was filled with bags of dried apple rings, plump raisins, pumpkin seeds, almonds, trail mix, etc. I thought of all the health food stores I’d been in, as well as the “Amish” Market at home and was excited to buy me some nuts.

When we pulled up I was a little surprised. What a small building standing all by itself. And pretty small on the inside too. Not quite what I was expecting. There are only about 5 aisles. BUT THEN as I explored, I discovered they had just about everything my little heart could ever want. Every single nook is filled with beautiful and wondrous items. And they offer most of their products in organic varieties. They have an aisle of flours & grains, an aisle of pastas, rice & legumes, an aisle of dried fruits & nuts (which includes trail mixes), and an aisle of spices & sauces/milks/juices/oils. They also have an aisle of candy & snack foods that I only wander into for Stephen’s gummy candies. Then along the front wall they have a plethora of honey, jams, sweeteners, & varieties of baking morsels. Along the back wall they have homemade granola, healthful cereals, natural toiletries (ie Toms Deodorant), and vitamin & mineral supplements. They also have a deli counter & a refrigerator/freezer section with various gluten-free products, vegan substitutes, and more traditional meats & cheeses. Above the freezer section they have a whole shelf of Ball Jars & the like. There is also the free-standing rack between the freezers and the standing area to form a line that has many health bars, breads, random stuff. On the other side of the standing room they have a huge assortment of teas, both loose & bagged from a variety of brands.

You’ve got the simple AP flour, bread flour, and whole wheat flour (which all come in organic), and then you have some sprouted spelt flour, brown rice flour, garbanzo flour, soy flour, white bean flour, lentil flour, seriously I don’t even remember all the varieties because I’ve never purchased the ones I’ve never seen in a recipe. And I look at recipes everyday, often most of the day. They also have everything a little vegan girl (or boy) might have seen in a couple of recipes once and never thought they’d buy. They have agar agar flakes & powder, ener-g egg replacer, a variety of different coconut oils, date sugar, stevia, every other sweetener known to man. They have every nut you could ever want, salted, unsalted, roasted, raw, whole, or as a meal (ie almond meal). They have a grain that I’ve never heard of called Freekeh. They have black barley, and regular barley, the best prices on vanilla beans, every dried fruit, every legume, every spice. And they find stuff if they don’t have it and you want it! I told them I was looking for Agar Agar powder last summer when they only had the flakes, the gentleman made a note of it & the next time I was in the store they had the powder!

They also have the zillion things I haven’t mentioned because the list could go on & on & on & on like the song that never ends, it just goes on and on, my friend.

My most recent purchases were:

  • Organic, Unsweetened, Unsulfured Shredded Coconut
  • Organic Garbanzo/Chickpea/Gram Flour
  • Organic Soy Flour
  • EnerG Egg Replacer
  • Agar Agar Powder
  • Organic Whole Wheat Pastry Flour
  • Dried Goji Berries!
  • Numi Jasmine Green Tea
  • Organic English Walnuts
  • Dried Currants (I prefer them to raisins)

I bought the coconut specifically for Pre‘s Coconut Macaroons I just made.

I bought the walnuts because I plan to make some Jam Thumbprint Cookies, inspired by the Feasting Freds.

I bought the soy flour for some muffin recipes, the gram flour for some Indian recipes, the currants for some scones, the EnerG because it’s in so many vegan baked goods, the goji berries because I’ve never had them, and the jasmine green tea because I love it 🙂

I don’t know what I’m going to use the Agar Agar for… Any suggestions, friends?

I’ll be posting some of these recipes soon!

Vegan Jam Thumbprint Cookies

Let me preface by saying these cookies are seriously yummy. And they’re super easy. And they’re vegan. They’re like a gift from the universe.

I found them on Feasting Freds a couple of months ago when I was looking for vegan desserts to try. And I’ve made them 3 times since. They taste healthy too, which could be bad because you don’t feel guilty after eating a whole bunch. Anyway, I made a batch for Stephen to take back to school with him.

Jam Thumbprints

Adapted from Feasting Freds

  • 1 Cup Walnuts
  • 1 Cup Oats
  • 1/2 Cup Sweet Brown Rice Flour
  • 1/2 Cup Whole Wheat Flour
  • 1/2 Cup Vegetable/Canola Oil
  • 1/2 Cup Maple Syrup
  • 2 Tsp Cinnamon
  • 1/2 Tsp Salt
  • Jam/Preserves of Choice

Preheat oven to 350 Degrees Fahrenheit.

Add walnuts & oats to food processor and blend until a coarse powder forms. If you want smoother cookies, process longer. If you want little walnut chunks and oats process for less time. Add remaining dry ingredients and pulse to combine. Add wet ingredients and process until mixture comes together.

Form golf ball size cookies (I just use my tablespoon) and plop onto baking sheet. Using your THUMB! create an imprint in the center of the cookie. Fill with jam of choice. I’ve used apricot, raspberry, and blackberry. All delicious. I want to try it with other nuts next time. Or perhaps a combination. I have a bunch of raw almonds I need to use.

Bake for 12 to 15 minutes. The bottom should be slightly browned and the top will look cooked but have no real color change.