Wednesday, May 12, 2010

You may have noticed I took about a 2 month blogation. I started lots of posts within those months, but just never did get around to posting them. One such posts I started a few weeks back when ramps made their first appearance at the farmers market. I'll spare you the portions which are no longer topical (which would pretty much be this whole post since ramp season is over), but I have to share these pics and I highly recommend you pick up some ramps next spring.

Ramps are a wild leek that look like a green onion with two big green leaves. They can be found in the woods in the spring if you know where to look. Unfortunately I don't - I found mine at the Farmers Market. Maybe next year I will learn to forage.

I picked up a few bunches and would have probably used them the same way I use a green onion if one of the vendors hadn't had a sample of ramp pesto to try. It was amazing; spicy, green and super garlicy. But to my surprise, it contained no garlic at all. It is the leaves of the ramp that provided all the garlic kick, and I'm so glad he told us that or I probably would have sent the leaves into the compost for the worms and centipedes to enjoy. The ramp pesto is simple and I whipped up a big batch in the food processor.

The recipe is simple: ramp leaves, walnuts (could also use pine nuts but they leave a funky taste in my mouth), pecorino romano cheese (optional), olive oil, and kosher salt. We enjoyed it on pizza with fresh mozz, sun dried tomatoes, mushrooms and green olives, on Ohio City fresh pasta, and I froze some for later.


Ramp Pesto

Ramp pesto pizza

I tried two things with the bulbs. First I pickled some:

Pickled Ramp Bulbs - sweet and tangy

Second, I used the ramp bulbs instead of onions and garlics in a beef chili recipe that turned out delish.


Anne said...

You are sending us down here in Nashville into a reading frenzy with these two posts this week!!! ;)

Mel said...

Ramp Pesto sounds amazing! I didn't find any ramps this season at the market. I need to look around at some of the other farmer's markets next Spring.

jackiee said...

Hey I noticed this recipe on your blog and it caught my attention. Do you have any good recipes like this that are healthy? If you do, you should enter them into this cooking contest that's coming to Cleveland on September's the Aetna Healthy Food Fight. You can go to for more details, but the deadline for Cleveland is September 8th. Oh, and throughout the contest, celebrity cooks will be judging (Bobby Flay, Sunny Anderson, Sara Moulton, or Cat Cora). Good luck if you decide to enter and if not, please keep posting! :)