Ramp Butter and Friends

Here's the story of a lovely lady, I met on facebook,
named Rose Marie,
who is living in Sharon Springs, NY (rural part of New York State).

No she doesn't live with "3 very lovely girls, all with hair of gold, like their mother" (Brady Bunch reference if you are old enough to get it), but even better......she has ramps! (and is an amazing gardener and cook with plenty of land to grow her own vegetables!).

Rose Marie and I are "friends", but only on facebook, we have never met in person and I am envious of her ramps, one could say I have "ramp envy".

How can I get me some ramps?

Well, the garden state (where I live, in New Jersey), has no RAMPS, that I can find.

I've been told by some chef friends that I can forage them near the South Mountain Reservation by the waterfall, however, can you see me going out there and looking for ramps?

I would probably wind up poisoning us in the end, by picking lily of the valley or some poisonous weed instead.

I've taken the ride to the Union Square Greenmarket in the city twice, and when I get there the sign reads RAMPS SOLD OUT. Really? How many bunches of ramps did they have?

What are ramps anyway? and why am I so obsessed with them?
(I had never even heard of "ramps" until 6 years ago, when I started my food blog).

Ramps are wild leeks, a spring allium, and grow wild in certain parts of the U.S.
They smell heavenly, like mild garlic and sweet onion.....I can't explain.
and they are very in vogue right now.
They are the new KALE!

I was getting tired of looking at Rose Marie's eggs, potatoes and pastas all made with ramps.......
I told Rose Marie that I was so envious of her ramps, and she kindly offered to mail me some from her woods. I accepted her generous offer.

Here are Rose Marie's back woods in Sharon Springs, NY with the ramps........she has a lot to share!

My package of beautiful stinky leaves and bulbs arrived safely 2 days later, and ramp butter is what I would make.

I would make enough for 2 sticks of butter, one for my tagliatelle, and one for the freezer for future ramp dishes.

Here's how: (by the way, you have to do this with excitement!).

Ramp Butter:

2 sticks of unsalted good quality butter
2 big bunches of ramps, cleaned and trimmed
1 tsp sea salt

I blanched my ramps for 30 seconds in boiling water, then plunged them into an ice bath to set the lovely green color (you can skip this step, and just chop the ramps raw).

I dried the ramps wrapped in paper towels and squeezed all the moisture out.

After the ramps were dry, I chopped them with my big chef's knife.

Then I threw them in the food processor along w/ the sticks of butter, cut into pieces.

Whizzed a few times and had a beautiful green butter.

Layed the butter out in 2 logs on plastic wrap or parchment paper and rolled into logs.
Sealed up the ends and double wrapped to freeze.

Stays in the freezer for 3 months or more. Take a slice as needed.

Spread on toast, whisk into scrambled eggs, put in a baked potato or mix in with a nice, fresh hot bowl of pasta with some lemon zest!


Spring at its very best.

Thanks Rose Marie!



Anonymous said…
Is this even legal? Semi-anonymous ramps delivered via snail mail - ONLY YOU, Ms. Snacks, ONLY YOU!
Natalia said…
I've never heard of ramps until you mentioned them. Ha-ha, loved your reference to South Mountain Reservation. I actually pick chicken-of-the-woods in the Reservation (those are the yellowish mushrooms that grow on trees, and taste like chicken when sauteed, which I'm sure you've heard of). We have a house in the Catskills, but I've never even seen ramps, but will definitely keep an eye out for them in our woods. We do have wild asparagus that grows up there.
Anonymous said…
You always meet the nicest people.
I have never tried ramps, but hopefully will meet someone who will mail me some too!
Lovely post!
I see no ramps here at all and I have no Rose Marie I could get them from, lucky you, they look beautiful. Can we grow them? I'll ask my gardener Tony to look into that!
Rebecca said…
Oh My! I love to do everything with EXCITEMENT! I can't wait to look here in Charlottesville for those glorious ramps- my guess is that we've been treating them as weeds and they are growing wild out by our chicken coop! Thanks Sta!
Ciao Chow Linda said…
Ramps are one of those things I still haven't tried - I need to find a source like yours too! Or go hunting in the woods soon.
Catherine said…
We call them wild garlic here in the UK, and there are tons around here in the woods. The local farmers markets all have them as well.

Would be wary of picking them in the woods, due to proliferation of dog walkers and wild foxes.
Bluebird NY said…
Up here, there's a foodie festival that honors ramps...Ramp Fest. It was held last weekend and is so much fun.
Seaview said…
I am going to see if Delicious orchards has them ! Never had them but heard they are delicious even sauted lightly.
Jordan said…
Well, you know La Czecha and I found a patch of ramps in the woods in Florham Park, so they're here! And since I just washed the car, we're making SS ramp butter right now. She's trimming and I'm typing (LOL). If the local ramps are still plentiful on our next foray, we'll bring you a bunch!

PS: Did you see the anemic cultivated ramps they're selling at the Madison Whole Foods for $14.99? So sad.

Unknown said…
I got them at the summit farmers market last Sunday for $4.00 a bunch! They said last week was the last week. Check this week!