A friend recalled once a time we were playing on the swings on the playground (this friend had already managed to tolerate exposure to my random moments of insanity) and I decided to see how high I could swing before being brave enough to jump off midswing. As I landed with a thud on the ground, I bravely declared, "Eureka! I discovered the law of gravity!"
"Okay, Rachel. Get to the point. Why are you once again boring us with your endless anecdotes?"
Oh yes, I do have a point. I had a "Eureka Moment" this week. I learned in school that eureka means, "I have found it." (Or that's what I was told Archimedes meant when he went streaking through the palace).
Well, maybe instead of "Eureka," I should say, "Eu-LEEK-a". I have discovered something I have been looking for!
(Wow classic TERP material: Pointless story and bad pun. I'm on a roll today.)
For the best couple of years I have been trying so hard to find ramps. I have looked at the farm markets. I have attempted to forage for them. One would think that the ample fields and ponds surrounding my barn would be ramp central, but that would be wrong. In the past I have never been able to find a single ramp.
Well, I did some foraging elsewhere - namely Whole Foods - and, lo and behold, found ramps this week. The suckers are grown way upstate (as in REAL upstate - not Westchester), which seems like an odd need when some people manage to find them in Yonkers (which, I repeat is NOT UPSTATE).
So I had ramps. Only half my struggle was over. Now that I had them, what was I supposed to do with them?
To tell the truth, I had no clue.
I had to come up with things I might usually make for dinner, given the current restrictions I've been placing on my meals, and find a way to incorporate the ramps. I promised myself it would be something other than pesto. I had my charmoula this week. I don't need any more pulverized green stuff!
I started to think pork. I bought a tenderloin and sliced it into medallions. Each one was wrapped with a ramp and secured with a toothpick.
They were browned on both sides in a pan and finished in the oven.
I deglazed the pan with sherry and added some fresh sage. Then I finished it with a little cream.
For Kevin I placed a piece of halibut on a bed of ramps and lemon slices, rubbed it with a little olive oil, sprinkled it with pepper and just a hint of salt, topped it with more lemon slices and baked it in a foil pouch.
I served kale chips on the side. I learned a neat trick from Simply Gluten Free to use a little vinegar on them. I took it one step further and used rice vinegar and sriracha to them. This added a bit more flavor so I could cut back on the salt (I used to use tons of salt on my kale chips).
Pork was really good. The ramps gave it a nice flavor. I hope I can find these again next spring.
Ramped-Up Pork Medallions
1 Pork tenderloin, cut in roughly 2" thick slices
Enough ramps to wrap each slice
Salt and pepper
2 tsp fresh sage leaves
1/2 cup dry sherry
1/4 cup heavy cream
Olive oil for sauteeing
Heat oven to 400 degrees.
Wrap each pork slice with a ramp and secure with a toothpick. Lightly sprinkle with salt and pepper.
Heat oil in a pan. Brown the pork slices on both sides. Place in the hot oven an additional 5-10 minutes or until cooked through.
Remove pork from pan. Deglaze pan with sherry and add sage. Allow to reduce down for a minute or two. Stir in cream. Place pork medallions on a plate and top with sauce.
ADDENDUM: I still had about 5 leaves left over this morning along with the bits of bulb and stem. I chopped up the bulb and stem bits and sauteed them in butter and then scrambled eggs in it. Yummy. I grilled the leaves on the side. WOW! Grilled ramps are delicious!