Ramps Allium tricoccum One of the true signs that Spring has finally arrived. A sign that the long winter is finally over. Soon there will be rhubarb, asparagus, peas, strawberries and much more. For anyone who is in the culinary industry or loves to forage- Ramps are a big deal. The season for ramps is only for about a month and a half, but definitely seems shorter.
Ramp Mania! or The Great Ramp Hunt! many people call it. Its the first moment that ramps are available, Chefs either become foragers or will pay premium prices for the first ramps. A ramp, often called a wild leek, tastes like a mix between garlic, and a leek, but has something about it to call its own. Some people have referred to this “thing” as a musk, but I think its just the fact that it is wild, pure, and for the most part the result of something grown naturally, instead of forced.
Several people will buy outrageous amounts of ramps, just to pickle them, in order to have them in the later months when they are not available. It seems to me however, that as the season is over so does our interest diminish in ramps. Mainly because there are many spring and summer fruits and vegetables taking the spot light. So, I suggest making the most of this ramp season by using it however you like, Pickle it, char them, (one of my favorites) make pesto with it, turn it into a relish. Do whatever you like, as long as you find a way to make it a part of your cooking, because it is definitely worth it.
You can find ramps at your local farmers markets, and I wouldn’t doubt that they are available in certain high end (and highly priced) grocery stores. But the best way to enjoy ramps is by pulling them straight out of the ground yourself.