Ramp & Asparagus Tart

I haven't made a tart for you in a while.
Since ramps are only in season for about 3 weeks, here we go.

What are ramps?  and why does everyone get so excited about them?

Ramps are the first things to pop out in the spring, along with your tulips and daffodils.  

They are little wild leeks (some would say wild garlic).   They are good in pesto and are just pretty.  People forage them and go crazy over them.

Ramps are totally overrated.   I've said it before on this blog.  

People stand in line for them at farmer's markets, pay too much $ for them, and they always sell out.  Sort of like garlic scapes.....same sort of deal, such excitement and I never really know what to do with them.

Sorry ramp lovers.

Luckily, I have chef friends who give me ramps each year, because they are silly expensive.

I decided to use my precious ramps in a tart.  You can use regular fat spring leeks instead of the ramps if you like.

Here, I sauteed the ramps in some butter and salt and layered them with cooked asparagus and peas, black garlic (look it up) and made this luscious tart.

Here's how I made the tart:

I used 5 eggs and 3/4 cup of heavy cream, salt & pepper.
Use whatever cheese you like, I used pecorino, about a cup.  
Whisk this all up to make the custard.

I used defrosted puff pastry and rolled it out in a sheet pan.   

Poured my lovely custard (filled with some of the chopped cooked asparagus, black garlic & peas) into the pastry. 

I decorated the top with whole cooked asparagus spears and buttery ramp leaves.

I baked the tart at 375F for 30 minutes.

I brought the squares to a garden party and we ate them at room temperature.

Everybody loved the tart and oohed and aahed about the ramps.

The End.


Unknown said…
Hi Stacey!
Here in Quebec, wild garlic, known to you as ramp is a protected plant as it is slowly destined to disappear from being over harvested by unknowing or overzealous people.

I was glad to see that your ramps have no bulbs therefore, were harvested sustainably, as they should be, leaving the bulb in the earth for next year’s harvest. Sadly, many people do not know that the leaves are really the tastier part and that the bulb may take from 4 to 8 years to mature to a point where it is able to grow seeds and reproduce.

I am lucky enough to have a garden, on the outskirts of Montreal, where I have planted a bunch of wild garlic, just because I was told that it would not grow in a garden :). They have been growing for over 20 years now. I harvest one leaf from each plant in the springtime and savor the subtle taste as a gift from Spring. Sadly, this year due to the late snowstorm we had in mid-April,only a few plants of wild garlic and wild ginger were spared.

I will definitely try your recipe, I have just enough wild garlic leaves for it and it looks so good it can only be delicious!

Bebe said…
Feeling frisky this AN and egged on by Stacey, who sounds the same, and at the risk of sounding irreverent and being expelled from the foodie world, how can a wild plant face extinction by being harvested? Baffling.
Bebe said…
Found this. Very much what Marie said. Interesting to someone who knows nothing about ramps:

Anonymous said…
In answer to Bebe’s post:
I read the link you provided, very interesting, but a too complicated version of growing wild garlic! Since a seed, even if scarified in your own fridge, will take at least 3 years to show real leaves, sowing might not be the best solution If you want to grow wild garlic. If you still want to buy seeds, make sure the place you get them from is reliable as often you may receive regular garlic seeds instead.

All I did was gather a clump, with enough earth not to disturb the bulbs and plant it in my garden in a spot that gets only early morning and late afternoon sun. They’ve been growing there for over twenty years without any special care. They comport themselves like tulips and die down in the summer. Mine only flowered once and even though I used a small paintbrush to make sure they were properly pollinated, no seeds showed up!

I have to tell you that my soil is very acidic but also mainly clay, not the best for growing wild garlic according to experts. Still my little garlic clump soldiers on!

If you have a garden, it’s worth trying. Make sure when you dig up your clump that you are removing it from a large population of wild garlic. I was told not to remove more than 5% because it can jeopardize the rest of the plants, the same as when you harvest it from the wild.

Don’t forget when you lift up the clump that you choose, to dig very deep as wild garlic can grow as deep as 8-10 inches.

Stacey Snacks said…
Ramps are wild and come back every year.......any person who is a "forager" is always careful to take only the base and not the bulbs......I wouldn't worry about the extinction of ramps....too many other problems these days that driving me crazy.

Thanks Marie for the info and Bebe for always keeping the conversation lively.