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Ramping It Up With Ramps

I am a local chef who enjoys wandering around farmers' markets in search of beautiful seasonal ingredients. My blog will hopefully demystify them and give you a few ideas and recipes for your table

Ramps: what on earth are they? Certainly not a mainstream ingredient, that's for sure.

My first introduction to ramps was in the kitchen of Tarry Lodge. One Spring day Andy Nusser returned from a morning of "foraging" with an armload of these delicate beauties, and after a good wash got to work creating with them. In my little corner of the Tarry Lodge world of antipasti they appeared in the farro dish.

Ramps are from the onion family. They are delicate and beautiful with broad, smooth, bright green leaves, often with deep purple or burgundy tints on the lower stems. They make their appearance in late Spring when the last of the snow melts. Their bulbs are a bit scallion-like rooted just beneath the surface of the soil. Ramps have a strong and distinctive onion scent and taste a little like garlic. They even are a source of Vitamins A and C. Since ramps can be eaten raw or cooked I thought it might be fun to use them two ways in this week's post.

Every now and then I like to make egg salad. I'm not a big fan of mayonnaise - except maybe on a ham and cheese sandwich - so I like using Greek yogurt, and so does my husband. I use it frequently as a substitute for mayo or even sour cream. After a quick check of the 'fridge I found several ingredients to add to my ramp-egg salad.

I thought I might also share a little tip for making perfect hard boiled eggs and it's simple! Place your eggs in a pot with cold water, covered about 2 inches. Bring to a boil. Then take off the heat, cover the pot and let them sit for 12 minutes. Run them under cool water and peel.

While the eggs are cooking you can get your ingredients sliced and diced. Once you have it all done, give everything a gentle mix and serve on a soft bun with some delicate greens.

Check  my blog for more on ramps and my new recipes! 

This post is contributed by a community member. The views expressed in this blog are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect those of Patch Media Corporation. Everyone is welcome to submit a post to Patch. If you'd like to post a blog, go here to get started.

Leslie Yager May 04, 2012 at 09:31 PM
I love ramps. They're delish and as versatile as garlic. Popular enough to inspire a new breed of thief: the ramp rustlers. Ramps: the Holy Grail of spring produce. They're grown and sold at Holbrook Farm in Bethel!
Suzze May 05, 2012 at 01:27 PM
I sauté finely chopped ramps in a little butter, add sea salt to taste. Then toss in pea pods for 2 minutes them pour this over a half Lb of fresh, drained linguine. Finish with fresh shaved parmesan cheese and it is an amazing, fast meal! Enjoy!

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