Ramp Butter

I had no idea that ramps were a thing until I moved to New York and started frequenting the Union Square Farmer’s Market. Every Spring I would watch what I could only assume were savvy New Yorkers descending upon the one or two tables selling ramps with what appeared to be a mix of excitement and desperation. It was the kind of NYC behavior I had come to know as a reliable indicator of something good. One day I decided to jockey my way through the throngs of devoted ramp enthusiasts to try and see what all of the fuss was about only to feel slightly disappointed when I got to the table and saw what looked like a pile of unassuming spring onions. Despite the anticlimactic introduction, I knew better than to walk away. I bought a bunch and the rest is history.

There are about a million ways to prepare ramps. You can sauté them in a little butter, or chop them up like scallions and toss them into a salad, or whiz them in a food processor and make pesto. These are just a few ideas, but I honestly can’t think of a better way to immortalize a seasonal ingredient than to turn it into a compound butter. Butter, as we all know, makes everything better (I’m a huge fan), and compound butters are such an easy way to elevate simple ingredients into something special. The pungent onion-garlic flavor of the ramps pairs perfectly with the sweet, creamy taste of butter. I love it spread over bread. In fact, one of my favorite things to do when I’m entertaining in the spring is to put out a cutting board with a baguette, a bread knife, and a bowl of ramp butter and let my guests fend for themselves while I’m cooking dinner.

Ramp Butter

one bunch of ramps (ramps are typically sold in bunches, and one bunch should do)
1 cup (loosely packed) parsley leaves
1 tsp lemon zest
1 lemon, juiced
1 tsp salt
2 sticks unsalted butter, room temperature

Throw all of the ingredients into a food processor and you’re good to go. You can always add more butter if you prefer it a little less rampy. Transfer the butter to a small bowl to spread over bread, or use parchment paper to roll the butter into a log and refrigerate; it can then be sliced and used for sautéing, adding instant flavor to any dish.

So off you go — grab a bunch of ramps and make this happen. If you’re like me, you’ll want to swim in a vat of ramp butter and forget your worries. Pair it with a glass of Sancerre and I’m pretty all of your problems will disappear. This recipe highlights a beautiful spring specialty and brings meaning to an everyday staple like bread and butter. That, to me, is yoga — meditating on something simple and then savoring the rich and surprisingly complex essence derived from that practice. Enjoy!

Chrissy
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  • Thanks for welcoming me into your h(om)e.

    May this meditation help you find the peace within. I look forward to sharing more inspiration and goodies with you in my regular newsletters.

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