Yesterday on my evening shopping trip I happened upon ramps for sale in the produce aisle- an unexpected but welcomed find. If you haven’t tried ramps, their flavor lies somewhere between spring onions and garlic. They grow wild in North America and are traditionally served with eggs, potatoes, pinto beans, corn-bread and other savory, breakfasty fare. Since I had intended to cook potatoes and broccolini anyway, I threw these in and the result was delicious. The ramps have a strong scent but mellowed out nicely in the pan and didn’t overpower the other vegetables. May is the best time to find these delights, so be sure to be on the lookout over the next two weeks.
Ramps, potatoes and broccolini:
1 bunch ramps
1 bunch broccolini
3 large golden potatoes
salt and pepper to taste
olive oil or butter
Wash but do not peel the potatoes. Put these in a pan and cover with cold water. Bring the water to a rolling boil and let the potatoes cook in the boiling water for 10-15 minutes until they’re almost soft. When a fork goes through a couple of inches they are done: remove and set them aside in a strainer to cool. When the potatoes have cooled, chop them into thin medallions.
Meanwhile, prepare the ramps and broccolini. First separate the green leaves from the white bulbs on the ramps. Dice the leaves and chop the bulbs and set these aside in separate bowls. Then finely chop the broccolini and set this aside.
Heat oil or butter in a large frying pan. Add the potato medallions and fry until the bottoms begin to become golden brown. Flip these over and add the white bulbs of the ramps as well as salt and pepper to taste. After a few minutes add the broccolini and the leaves of the ramps. Give these a good stir and then cover the pan with a top or foil and let this steam for a few minutes.
Serve immediately, perhaps with a splash of vinegar or tabasco.