We spent a hot July afternoon at one of our favourite markets: Jardins St-Léon, located just south of downtown Winnipeg, across from a bike shop fixed with its own coffee shop – a truly fantastic corner. 

Tuesdays tend to be quiet, so we went – camera in hand – and were immediately immersed in the energy that is brought by the young owners. Having always existed as a family-run business, the children, over the past 3 years have taken the reigns, offering a completely revitalized experience of an urban market. Each time we go,  we are surrounded by familiar faces, and there is this wonderful feeling that we’ve always known each of the staff members, but can’t quite put our finger on how and where – they’ve just always been there for us. 

Curious, curly garlic scapes catch our attention – the flower bud of the garlic plant. The bud is removed in late June to encourage the bulbs to continue growing, so this happens to be perfect timing. We took home a whole bundle to make a robust pesto to accompany a fresh summer pasta.

Garlic Scape Pesto Linguine

To make the Garlic Scape Pesto:

10 each Garlic Scapes, bulbs trimmed

1/2 Cup Pine Nuts, toasted

1/2 tsp Sea Salt

1 Cup Parmesan (Reggiano)

1 Cup Basil Leaves (fresh)

1 Cup Extra Virgin Olive Oil

Add chopped garlic scapes, pine nuts, sea salt, parmesan and basil to food processor. Process until all ingredients are finely chopped. Add olive oil slowly while processing until pesto forms a smooth paste. Set aside. 

4 portions Linguine

1 Tbsp Extra Virgin Olive oil

1/2 Shallot, cut into think strips

1 Cup Seasonal Mushrooms, quartered

1/2 Cup Cherry Tomatoes

1/2 CupGarlic Scape Pesto

TT Parmesan (to garnish)

Cook linguine in a large pot of boiling water until “al dente”. Meanwhile, heat olive oil in a separate pan and sauté shallots and mushrooms until fully cooked. Season to taste. Drain pasta and return to pot, mix in garlic scape pesto adding more if required. Transfer each portion of coated linguine noodles to a plate creating a nest. Top with sautéed shallots, mushrooms and fresh cherry tomatoes. Garnish with remaining Parmesan and drizzle with additional pesto. Enjoy! 

Use the remaining pesto as you see fit!