Did ramps ever think they would be the subject of so much heated debate? These wild scallions, which grow in some parts of the country for a short period in the early spring, are always the subject of so much contention. People love them, as uncultivate-able harbingers of spring, people hate them, because anything that is prized and festishized inevitably becomes the object of scorn by those who are “over them”.
I’ve written a piece or two, and a recipe or two about ramps. I love them. I love them mostly because they do happen to grow near where I live, and I love that I get to spend some time with my kids digging for them every May, and then we get to eat the very things we found growing wild in the woods.
And when we are being very industrious, we pick a lot of them (but not too many — we won’t be the cause of ramp extinction in our neck of the woods), and bring them to restaurants where the boys sell them, and then we also get to check out the dishes the chefs are making with our ramps. Foraging + cooking + a little commerce for the kids. Yesterday (Mother’s Day, doncha know), the boys thought we should come up with a name for our “company”, and Jack immediately took the prize with “Lady and the Ramp.”
Leave those little ramps alone. Pick on an onion your own size.
How to Cook with Ramps: