Once I buy them, I never know what to do with them.
The two most common ramp recipes I see are pickled ramps and ramp pesto. I never want to do what's commonly done, so I try to come up with new ideas. I have placed fish fillets on them, wrapped it all up in parchment, and served the resulting dish to Sir Pickypants who ate he fish and discarded the ramps. I have wrapped pork medallions in them (which had pretty good results). Once I purchased this year's bundle of ramps I asked myself, "What else can I do? Maybe I should just give up and make pesto."
Then it came to me. Rather than make pesto and put the ramps on the pasta, how about I put the ramps in the pasta? What would be a better spring dish than ramp-flavored gnocchi tossed with some semi-seasonal vegetables (they tell me at the farmer's market that asparagus is coming soon, but isn't ready yet) and butter?
My gnocchi were simple. I made ricotta rather than potato gnocchi, which I like for their light texture. I simply mixed them with some pureed ramps. It couldn't be easier. I used an all-purpose gluten-free flour blend, but I'm sure it would work just as well with regular flour.
I served them not just with the asparagus and butter, but also sage and Italian chicken sausage (that looked a bit like anemic hot dogs.
I liked the ramp flavor, but I didn't like the GF flour in them. I used Bob's Red Mill all-purpose and it gave the gnocchi a grainy texture and a bit of a bean-y flavor (aa there are bean flours in the blend). I will definitely need to make some experiments with different flours if I want to make them gluten free again.
Ramp Ricotta Gnocchi
- 1 1/2 cup all-purpose flour (plus more for dusting)
- 2 cups ricotta
- About 10 ramps
- 1 egg
- 1/4 cup grated Parmesan
- Pinch salt
Bring 6 quarts of salted water to a boil. Place the gnocchi in the water and cook until they float to the surface.
Remove with a stainer and serve with melted butter or your favorite sauce.