Garlic Scapes and Gooseberries!

For those of you looking for new ingredients to incorporate into your cooking this spring-into-summer, I’m going to turn back to the unusual classics of cuisine! Spring-into-summer is a great time to try new ingredients, pull out old ones in a new way, or reinvent that delicious dish from your childhood. Let’s take a peek at two delicious ingredients and ways that you can bring fresh fruits and vegetables into your life.

Garlic Scapes are an incredible part of this traditional vegetable that most people overlook. In fact, I was just put on their trail a few days ago, and now I can’t get enough! They’re the twirly, curly, green-onion-y growth of the garlic (that thing that starts to sprout if you let your garlic sit too long). Cut off long before garlic harvesting, these sprouts are actually a delicious ingredient that can be chopped up into pestos, sauces, and other dishes.

Garlic Scapes
So what’s the best way to use garlic scapes? From what I’ve heard and in my personal opinion, it’s by making a pesto. Thick on crackers, thin in soups, pesto is a delicious addition to any lunch or dinner. Throw a dollop into your slow-cooker or spread a layer on a boring sandwich for a garlic-y, basil-y depth that you weren’t expecting!

  • 10 Garlic Scapes
  • 1/3 cup nuts (such as pistachios or almonds)
  • 1/3-1/2 cup grated Parmesan
  • Salt and Pepper
  • 1/3-1/2 cup olive oil

Blend and mix for deliciousness that you won’t forget! You’ll never go back to ordinary garlic cloves after this!

And what would summer be without the traditional but oft o’erlooked Gooseberry? Even better, let’s throw these tart-sweet treats into a pie that will wow any of your neighbours! These fuzzy berries can be used when they are firm and tart or soft and sweet, so be conscious of what sort of gooseberries you’re picking to put in your pie, as you may want to add or remove sugar tending to their ripeness.

Gooseberry Pie
I’m going to take this recipe from AllRecipes, but I’ve altered it, so if you would like to look at the original, go here. So, let’s take a peek at this pie, shall we?

  • 3 cups gooseberries
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 2 and 1/2 tblsp quick-cooking tapioca
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • double crust pastry
  • 2 tblsp milk
  • 1 further tblsp sugar


  1. Stem and rinse berries.
  2. Crush 1/2 cup berries in the bottom of a saucepan. Combine sugar, tapioca, and salt; mix with crushed berries. Cook and stir until mixture boils. Cook for 2-3 more minutes. Remove from heat, and add in remaining whole berries.
  3. Pour fruit filling into pastry. Adjust top crust , cut slits for escape of steam. Brush with milk and sugar.
  4. Bake at 400 degrees F (205 degrees C) for 40-45 minutes.

Good luck with your gooseberries and garlic scapes! Now you have two great recipes to try out and cook as the weather starts to get hot. Celebrate a ripe season with these great recipes and feel free to leave any comments about posts you’re interested in. We’d love to hear about what themes are your favourites and what you’d like us to write more about! Cheers!


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Pumpkin and Blueberry Pie, Sugar Free!

Pumpkin Pie

Are you tired of this meaning delicious seduction and a ban on bikinis? Are you having to turn a blind eye to those favourite sweet treats because of newfound diabetes or weight issue? Do you want to lower the sin guilt trip when you know you can’t resist a third (or fourth) slice? Let me tell you now, then. I have the answer. Today, I’m going to share with you two delicious pies that are tried and sure to be the best sugar free pies you will ever have! Anyone who has tried baking with Splenda knows the horrors it can wreak on consistency and flavour, but I’m here to say that you won’t have that problem any more if you try these out.

Sugar Free Pumpkin Pie

Makes 1 pie. Serves 8.

Pumpkin Pie

  • 3/4 cup Splenda (or 3/4 cup sugar)
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 2 tsp cinnamon
  • 1/2 tsp heaping ginger
  • 1/4 tsp heaping cloves
  • 1/4 tsp allspice
  • 2 eggs
  • 1 (15 oz) can pumpkin
  • 1 (12 oz) can Skim Evaporated Milk
  1. Preheat oven to 425 degrees Farenheit.
  2. Combine sugar/Splenda, salt, and spices in a small bowl. Beat eggs lightly in a large bowl. Stir in pumpkin and sugar-spice mixture. Gradually stir in the evaporated milk. Pour into pie shell.
  3. Bake in preheated oven for 15 minutes. Then, reduce temperature to 350 degrees Farenheit, bake 40-50 minutes or until knife inserted near the centre comes out clean. Cool on a wire rack for 2 hours.

Blueberry Pie

Now, nothing says American summer like good blueberry pie. And now, with this easy Splenda-able blueberry pie straight from the American South, you can appreciate a slice of juicy blueberries and spices with everyone else. The bonus? You don’t lose any of the sweet flavour in the process.

Having a mother who can’t eat sugar, I always cook a sugar-pie and a Splenda-pie, marked by blue masking tape. Whether you have a diabetic family member or simply want a healthy alternative to your favourite treats, give these pies a whirl. You won’t regret it!

Blueberry Pie

Sugar Free Blueberry Pie

Makes 1 pie. Serves 8.

  • 5 and 1/2 cup fresh blueberries.
  • 3 tblsp flour
  • 2-4 tsp lemon juice
  • 2/3-3/4 cup Splenda (or sugar)
  • 1/2 tsp nutmeg
  • 1 heaping tsp cinnamon
  • 1/4 tsp salt
  • 2 tblsp butter (optional)
  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees Farenheit.
  2. Prepare 2 crusts. Fill one with berries. Sprinkle lemon juice over the berries, then the mixed dry ingredients. If desired, add blobs of butter over mixture. Top with the other crust. Prick the top crust and crimp the sides.
  3. Bake for one hour. Serve hot over ice cream.

Happy baking!

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