Rampin' it Up

I've been wanting to experiment with ramps for awhile now. They are only really available in April and only for a short period of time so I usually don't pay attention and miss my window. This year though I succeeded! Ramps are like a wild onion and have more of a leek flavor. Once clean and snipped at the end you can use the whole stalk. Our friend Jessica joined us for dinner and games and helped eat up my experiments.

Since I wasn't sure when I'd get my hands on fresh wild ramps again anytime soon I wanted to try it a few different ways. The bread turned out amazing and is quite a simple equation for a recipe. I would love to try it again with some homemade pesto or roasted red pepper puree. The bread also turns out beautiful and only gets better once you slice into it.

Rounded dinner off with a simple olive oil based pasta with sautéed ramps and prosciutto. I wanted the ramps to shine in this dish and fill your mouth with their flavor. Simple but delicious.

Chimichurri Filled Twist with Lemon Thyme Butter:
from here

10 stalks of ramps
2 tbs red wine vinegar
1/4 tsp salt
1/2 tsp red pepper flakes
pinch of pepper

1   place all ingredients into food processor and blend until smooth

1 cup warm water
2 tsp yeast
1 cup whole wheat flour
1 1/2 cup flour
1 tbs olive oil
1/2 tsp salt
1 egg; lightly beaten
1/4 cup asiago cheese; shredded

1   in a large bowl mix water and yeast, let sit and get foamy for about 5 minutes
2   add in the flours, olive oil and salt
3   knead in a mixer-6-10 minutes
4   place in an oiled bowl and lightly plastic wrap over the top. let it rise for 1/2 hour
5   roll out dough on a floured surface into a rectangle about 12" x 18" and spread on the chimichurri evenly, leaving a 1" gap around the short sides and one of the long sides
6   roll the dough hot dog direction starting with the side you didn't leave the gap on
7   pinch the dough together at the seam and then also pinch each end together
8   cut roll in half, also pinch together those new ends
9   on a baking sheet gather two of the ends and twist the rolls over each other, tuck the ends under the loaf
10  let rise for 1/2 hour and preheat oven to 425 degrees F
11  brush dough lightly with egg and sprinkle on the asiago cheese
12  bake for 25-30 minutes, top should be golden brown. Also you know when it is done if when you flip the loaf over and tap the bottom it should make a hollow sound

Lemon Thyme Butter:
6 tbs butter; room temperature
2 tbs thyme; chopped
1/2 lemon; zested

1   beat all ingredients together and place in dish and store in refrigerator
2   slice up the bread and slather with the lemon thyme butter

 I also really wanted to make a dish were you could really taste the ramps, where they were the main focus. So I went with a simple olive oil pasta with some ramps and prosciutto sautéed with red chili peppers and a little salt. Sprinkled on some bread crumbs and a little shredded asiago and extra warm olive oil on the side. It was simple and you could twirl it all pretty on your fork which always makes me feel fancy, it was also delicious!

We finished up with these lavender oat white chocolate cookies which are strangely addictive and perfect for the emerging spring weather!

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