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Hank, I disagree with equating ramps with ramsons. Ramps aka wild leeks (Allium tricoccum) are very similar in flavour, but not the same species as wild garlic (bear’s garlic, Allium ursinum) we use in Europe. Yes, they can be substituted in recipes pretty easily, but whatever Wikipedia says, they’re not the same :)
Delicious! We made this last night and savored every bit. Didn’t see the photo of the sauteed ends of the ramps with the peso. Looks like we know how to use the leftover pesto. Thanks!
I made this last night for my clients and served it with fresh pasta and garlic sauteed shrimp… it was the highlight of the night! It made the shrimp and the pasta pop! Love it!
Thank you for a fantastic recipe for ramps! I LOVE them, but they’re awfully strong — this recipe makes good use of them without giving me breath that will fell an ox.
Only one correction — ramps are DEFINITELY found “east of Wisconsin”! As a matter of fact, they’re found all over the East Coast, and are quite popular in the mountains of North Carolina. I thought they were harder to find WEST of Wisconsin!
D’OH!!! Yes, you are correct! I meant West of Minnesota, actually. Sorry about that. ~Hank
Definitely gonna try this – does anyone know whether one can blanch basil to set it’s color, too? Usually I use lots of olive oil, but even sitting out too long I find it blackening when cut in a chiffonade, for example…
Yes, quick blanching in lots of salty boiling water – it must be salty – sets the green color in any plant. Basil might need only 10-30 seconds, then a good dousing in ice water to stop the cooking. ~Hank
I must find out what ramps are called locally, because I don’t think I’ve ever seen them before. I want that bowl of pesto right now with the focaccia I’ve baked!
If you are in the United States, they are almost always called either ramps or wild leeks. In the UK, they are ramsons. In France, “garlic leaves.” ~ Hank
I have heard that blanching will kill the vitamin C in parsley, so if you are making this to up grade your health, using olive oil might be more beneficial.
You only blanch the parsley for a few seconds, not long enough to destroy its vitamin C. But it is really to set the color in the veggies – otherwise they oxidize fast. If you are that concerned with it, then yes, be sure your pesto is well covered in olive oil. ~Hank