I picked up a bunch of local ramps today on my way home from class. They were $2 a bunch at Whole Foods and the season’s almost done, so I figured I better get my fill. This bunch was particularly fragrant – I’m pretty sure I stunk up the whole train car. Oh well, it was worth it. Besides, Chicago should be used to it. A friend on Twitter just shared with me an article that explains how the city’s name is derived from the Native American word for ramps/wild leeks.
Then I got home with them and realized I didn’t know what to do with them, so off to the Google it was. This recipe from Mario Battali for spaghetti with ramps sounded quite good. Unfortunately, I didn’t have any spaghetti in my cupboards but I did have some Hodgson Mill gluten-free penne.
|Ramps, sauteeing in extra virgin olive oil.|
The recipe’s really simple — basically you just saute the white parts of the ramps in olive oil, add kosher salt and crushed red pepper and then add the green parts of the ramps. Then you add the pasta and saute a little longer. Very simple, but really quite delicious. The original recipe also called for adding bread crumbs but I skipped that. This dish would have been better with the right shape of pasta but it was still a great way to showcase the ramps.
To really go for the green, I also had some steamed spinach with butter and freshly-ground pepper on the side.