Stir-Fried Garlic Scapes

Stir-Fried Garlic Scapes

Stir-Fried Garlic Scapes excerpted from Taste Tibet: Family Recipes from the Himalayas by Julie Kleeman & Yeshi Jampa. Photography by Ola O. Smit.

Taste Tibet: Family Recipes from the Himalayas by Julie Kleeman & Yeshi Jampa

Nourishing, simple, seasonal food that heals as well as fuels: This way of eating might be popular today, but it has been traditional in Tibet for over 8,000 years. Taste Tibet is a collection of over 80 recipes from the Tibetan Plateau, written for today’s home cook.

Create comforting soups and stews, discover the secrets of hand-pulled noodles, and learn everything you need to know about making and eating momo dumplings, Tibet’s most legendary and addictive culinary export.

Alongside the recipes, award-winning food writer Julie Kleeman and Tibetan cook Yeshi Jampa, who run the Taste Tibet restaurant and food stall, interweave stories of Yeshi’s childhood in Tibet, and the shared love of food that brought them together.

They reveal nomadic Himalayan food culture and practices, including mindful eating and communal cooking—a way of life that celebrates family, togetherness, and respect for food—while exploring the relationship between landscape and diet, evoking the simple, subtle, and unique flavours of Tibet.

Taste Tibet: Family Recipes from the Himalayas is available at and

Stir-Fried Garlic Scapes

Serves 4


Yeshi’s family grow garlic in the fields near their house. When it first emerges from the ground, they cut off the long, thin flowering shoots of the plant to allow the bulbs to grow bigger. These tender young shoots (scapes) are edible and add a delicate garlic flavor to salads, soups, and sauces–you can use them just as you would use chives.

For a vibrant taste of early spring, they can also be stir-fried. If you like, you can throw in some meat as well, adding it to the wok just before the garlic scapes go in. Bacon-smoked or unsmoked-makes a great addition, lending a delicious extra layer of texture and flavor to the dish.

2 tablespoons cooking oil

14 oz (400 g) garlic scapes

½ tablespoon light soy sauce

Wash the garlic scapes and cut them into 1-inch (2.5 cm) lengths. 

Heat the oil in a wok over high heat, and when it is steaming add the garlic scapes and stir-fry for a few minutes. Add the soy sauce and mix everything well. Turn down the heat to medium and cook for a further 2 minutes, or until the garlic scapes are tender, then serve. 

Yeshi says “Garlic scapes make a delicious substitute for beans, asparagus, etc. in all kinds of dishes. You will soon be hooked. In late spring and early summer, you sometimes see them at farmers’ markets, or they are easy to come by in your local Chinese supermarket. They may also be known as garlic shoots-just ask.”

Recipe reprinted with permission from Interlink Books.

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