Ramp season is short, so if you are lucky enough to find some at your local farmer's market or while foraging, it is exciting to find delicious ways to enjoy this vegetable beyond the season. One way is to make a compound butter using the ramp leaves. The process is easy and the ramp butter will keep in the refrigerator or freezer. Be sure to use high quality ingredients when making ramp butter. Unsalted European-style butter is a great choice because you can then control the salt levels yourself. Use a high quality salt to season the butter. A nice Kosher salt or flaky sea salt such as Maldon are delicious options.
Rounds of ramp butter can be placed on top of a perfectly cooked steak, tossed with pasta or simply spread over warm crusty bread for an elegant, gourmet experience.
2 sticks unsalted butter, softened to room temperature
4 ounces ramp leaves
1 teaspoon lemon zest
2 teaspoons lemon juice
1 teaspoon kosher salt
1/4 teaspoon ground black pepper
Gather the ingredients.
Bring a pot of salted water to a boil. Have a bowl of ice water ready nearby. Cook the ramps in the boiling water for 30 seconds to blanch.
Quickly remove the blanched ramps from the water and immediately immerse them in the bowl of ice water. This will stop the cooking process and keep the ramp leaves a beautiful green hue.
Drain the ramps and squeeze out as much water as possible. Spread the ramps out on paper towels to pat dry.
In the bowl of a food processor, add the blanched ramps, butter, lemon zest and juice, salt and pepper.
Process until all of the ingredients are combined and smooth.
Place two pieces of parchment paper down on the work surface. Divide the compound butter in half and place on each sheet of parchment.
Wrap the butter in the parchment paper, gently rolling and shaping the butter into a log. Twist the ends of the parchment paper to secure. Place in the refrigerator to firm up before using.
Once the butter has firmed, it can be sliced off into rounds and used as desired on meats, tossed into pasta, or on warm bread.
Ramp Butter Variations
This recipe is simply seasoned with kosher salt and black pepper. You can feel free to get creative with additional mix-ins for variations on this ramp butter. For a spicy kick, try adding a pinch of red pepper flakes. For an herbaceous twist, add fresh dill, basil, or parsley to the food processor when blending.
Ramp Butter Storage
Ramp butter will keep in the refrigerator for up to one week. The logs can also be placed in a zip to plastic bag and frozen for up to 3 months for later use.
What does a ramp taste like?
Ramps taste like a delicate combination of garlic and onions.
How long does ramp butter keep?
Ramp butter will keep in the refrigerator for up to one week and in the freezer for up to 3 months.
What is a ramp vegetable?
Ramps are small and delicate vegetables with a small bulb and broad flat leaves. They can be foraged during a short time in the Spring.
Can you eat ramps raw?
Ramps can be eaten raw, similarly to a spring onion or scallion.
Can you eat ramp greens?
Both the bulb and the green ramp leaves can be eaten.
How do you pick a ramp?
With a small sharp knife, cut the leaves from the center of clusters of ramp plants. It is important to harvest only the tops of the plants, and never pull up their roots. If you select from the middle of clumps of ramps it will also help the population stay strong.