This is about an eighth of the wild ramps that Steph and I harvested in Door County last week. It was a real struggle to use them all up, but we've done it! It's just too bad we have to wait a whole year until they're in season again - I feel like I'm finally getting the hang of it...they're really quite good - like a woodsy mixture of spring onions and garlic....

Here's a sampling of the meals we ate them in:

Dave slow cooked this rack of buffalo ribs on the grill in tin foil with ramps and potatoes. The moisture from the vegetables really helped keep the meat tender and imparted a really nice flavor.

These aren't ramps, but we ate some with the morels in the picture above (they're the last of what I had from Door County). It seems almost too simple, but morels simply dipped in flour and sauteed in butter is really the best way to do them, hands down. This was the appetizer to an outdoor meal that included gin and tonics, good old fashioned Wisconsin bratwurst and ramps cooked with potatoes.

I finally used the ramps up this weekend in a soup, which luckily I managed to get a few pictures of:

Here are the bulbs all cleaned up and ready to go. It takes quite a while to get them clean and beautiful like this, but it's rewarding work - they're such pretty little things!

So many good things start with bacon! I lined the bottom of the pan and cooked it till it was almost crispy. This is local uncured bacon, so it took a little longer and didn't crisp up as well as other bacon, but it worked perfectly for this purpose.

When the bacon was mostly cooked, the ramps got chopped up even further and tossed in the pan. I let them cook for a few minutes, then added a bunch of chopped asparagus (from Tipi produce here in Madison).

Lovely! You can see how nice and translucent the ramps get!

I didn't have any stock on hand, so I added plain water and let the soup cook on very low heat for a few hours. I also threw in the greens from the ramps, which were looking a little yellow, but were in reasonably good shape. When it was all good and mushy, I blended it with the hand blender and added some whole milk, salt, pepper, and a tiny bit of curry powder and vinegar.

Not the most beautiful soup, but the flavor made up for it - Wow! Nothing tastes quite as springy as cream of asparagus and ramp soup!

I had leftover soup for dinner tonight with this lovely salad of spring greens (baby lettuce from the market and pea shoots from the garden) topped with some of the whitefish salad that Dave made from the smoked whitefish I brought home from Door County. It's like tuna salad, but better. Ah, spring is a wonderful thing!

Cream of Asparagus and Ramp Soup

8 Slices uncured bacon
1-2 Cups ramp bottoms, washed, trimmed, and roughly chopped
1 Pound asparagus, chopped
1 Quart water
2-3 Cups whole milk
Salt and Pepper to taste
1/2-1 Tablespoon white wine vinegar
1/2-1 teaspoon curry powder

Cook bacon until fat is rendered. Add ramp bottoms and cook until ramps start to become translucent. Add asparagus and cook until asparagus is just barely cooked. Add water and simmer for at least 45 minutes, preferably longer. When vegetables are very tender, blend until desired consistency. Add milk, and season to taste.

share on: Facebook

1 comment:

  1. Hi Megan,
    Love your blog and am a huge fan of Sally Fallon and Weston Price, too. As an herbalist in the Northeast I teach sustainable foraging and wanted to make your followers aware of the fact that ramps are a vulnerable woodland species that should only be harvested with respect and reverence. I teach my students to harvest the "invasive" (or what I like to call "opportunistic") plants freely but proceed with caution when considering native flora which have precarious growing habits like allium tricoccum which require 2 years to germinate and another 5-6 years to mature into the relished bulbs. In Canada, ramps became endangered due to over-harvesting which prompted authorities to create regulations against commercial harvesting as well as imposing strict limits on personal use. Folks that have large supplies of wild ramps can help preserve them by harvesting only 10% of any population and harvest leaves only while leaving the bulb intact in the ground to ensure continued growth. Hope you find this information helpful! Happy Spring!!
    Alicia North


Note: Only a member of this blog may post a comment.