- Amanda

Ramp season is never long enough. The way to maximize it is to use the green tops for sautes and omelets and the like, and to save the crisp white bottoms for flash pickling. If you haven't done much pickling, don't despair: it could not be easier. You give the cloud-white stems a quick swim in boiling salted water to blanch them. Then douse the ramp bottoms with a simple pickling mixture (I like red wine vinegar, thyme, fresh ginger, fennel seeds and a dried red chile). Done! Your dinner party charcuterie platter awaits its garnish.

Shop the Story

Pickled Ramps

Makes about 2 cups pickled ramps

  • Salt
  • 1/2 pound ramps, green tops and root ends trimmed off
  • 2 dried red chilies
  • 6 sprigs thyme
  • 3 slices fresh ginger
  • 1 teaspoon fennel seeds
  • 1/2 cup sugar
  • 3 teaspoons kosher salt
  • 3/4 cup red wine vinegar
  • 3/4 cup water

1. Bring a medium pot of generously salted water to a boil. Add the ramps and cook for 1 minute. Drain and run cold water over the ramps to stop the cooking. Drain again.

2. Place the ramps in a medium bowl or 1-quart jar. Add the chilies, thyme, ginger, and fennel seeds. In a small saucepan, combine the sugar, 3 teaspoons salt, red wine vinegar and water. Bring to a boil and pour this mixture over the ramps. As soon as they're cool, you can serve them, or just cover and refrigerate.

Order now

A New Way to Dinner, co-authored by Food52's founders Amanda Hesser and Merrill Stubbs, is an indispensable playbook for stress-free meal-planning (hint: cook foundational dishes on the weekend and mix and match ‘em through the week).

Order now

See what other Food52 readers are saying.

  • ornithophagus
  • rebeccatheduck
  • A Canadian Foodie
    A Canadian Foodie
  • shayma
  • macyyz
Food52 (we cook 52 weeks a year, get it?) is a food and home brand, here to help you eat thoughtfully and live joyfully.


ornithophagus April 25, 2010
Made this last week, and what a great recipe. So easy yet it comes off feeling like you've accomplished some great feat.
Amanda H. April 30, 2010
Fantastic -- thanks for giving it a try!
rebeccatheduck April 21, 2010
I just tried pickling adapting this recipe into a canned version. My first attempt at canning...I hope it turns out well! Can't wait to have grilled lamb sausage with mustard and pickled ramps!
Amanda H. April 30, 2010
Cool -- hope it turned out well. "Well Preserved" is a great book (out last year) about preserving and canning all kinds of foods, if you're looking for a reference.
A C. April 19, 2010
Brilliant - Brilliant idea - thank you - never tasted them, never found them in a market. AM so wanting to.
Amanda H. April 19, 2010
Hope you'll get a chance to soon!
shayma April 19, 2010
we have the most glorious ramps here in Toronto- and i love fennel seeds- shall try your lovely version, Amanda.
Amanda H. April 19, 2010
Great -- enjoy.
macyyz April 18, 2010
I have had my pickled ramp bulbs for 2 years. Had some for dinner this evening, as the new crop is coming in. Picking is a great way to keep the season going. Anybody have a great salad dressing recipe?
Amanda H. April 19, 2010
Here's a good one: http://www.food52.com/recipes/207_salad_dressing
Tamar April 18, 2010
Koreans have been pickling ramps for generations. It's called sanmaneul
Amanda H. April 19, 2010
Didn't know that -- thanks!
MyCommunalTable April 19, 2010
I actually can always find fresh ramps to buy this time of year is at my local Korean market.
TheForkandTheRoad April 18, 2010
Just went to a ramp festival in Southwest PA yesterday. Ramp burgers, ramp soup, home fries with ramps as well as ramp mustards, pickled ramps and ramp butter. A small circle of ramp butter on top of a grilled bison steak for dinner was just amazing. They're a bit stinky, but not as bad as I expected. Thanks for the pickled ramp recipe. I'll be making this today.
Amanda H. April 19, 2010
Fun! I just bought some ramp butter at a local market.
Aliwaks April 17, 2010
I have been searching fro ramps, though the grow wild in western Pa they are sent to the NYC farmers markets and I've had a hard time finding them. And, fragrant as they are it has not stopped me from making the trip to NYC to get them, but that can round out the cost to around $80 a pound including travel and I just don't have the funds/time like I used.

This year I FOUND them! First I bought a small pricey bunch of wild garlic to console myself, since there were no ramps in our farmers market stand, but then at a regular old produce stand in Iovines, in Reading Terminal (Philly's version of Pike Street Market, sort of), they were hiding in the piles of chives, cilantro and dill. JACKPOT! I bought 10 bunches, I wanted to buy them all since I could not be certain they would be there again, but I managed a bit of control.

So far I have made monkeymoms chicken with ramps in place of shallots and a ramp/meyer lemon compound butter (THX Antoniajames!!), ramp scrambled eggs, grilled steaks with ramp compound butter, grilled ramps, pasta with sauteed ramps & soft boiled egg yolks, and sweet pea puree with ramps. I still have a few bunches left and looks like I found a project for today. THANKS!!
pierino April 17, 2010
It's rare for us to see ramps out here (California) but a Whole Foods location near me has them now.
Amanda H. April 19, 2010
thirschfeld April 16, 2010
Going to southern Indiana for morel season and one of the best side notes is not many people know about ramps. I will come home with a bag full of both. Definitely a right of spring.
Amanda H. April 16, 2010
Canada and Alaska grow the most morels, and it's apparently a very competitive business up there. Is it competitive in Indiana?
thirschfeld April 17, 2010
Morel hunting can be extremely competitive. I remember a few years back we stopped selling them at the restaurant where I was working because some of the kids, in Oregon, they were using to collect them were getting killed. I have always wondered if that was some folkloric tale because I just couldn't believe it. Fortunately in Indiana I haven't heard of any such thing but it is not polite to ask someone where there found their mushrooms either. Funny world we live in because lots of people walk right by all the other wonderful wild treats, ramps, fiddlehead ferns, black trumpets, chanterelles and for the health conscious wild ginseng, which you have to have a license from the state to pick if you plan to sell any of it. Going price for truly wild ginseng was close to $600 to $1000 per pound. Oh and I also think the morels from the midwest have one of the best flavor profiles, oaky, damp spring earth and moss, unlike many of the western cousins that grow in the pine forests.
Amanda H. April 17, 2010
Fascinating -- didn't know about the ginseng. Went on a foraging tour of a public park in Queens, NY, recently and was amazed by the number of edible plants. Day lilies, wild garlic, black birch, sassafras.
girlchemist April 16, 2010
the best martini i have ever been served was a dirty gin martini made with pickled ramps (en brasserie, nyc). divine. thank you for posting this,
Amanda H. April 16, 2010
Hadn't thought of that use -- brilliant.
braiseandbutter April 16, 2010
fingers crossed that i see ramps at the market tomorrow. if so, i am totally trying this. how long do you think they'll keep in the fridge?
Amanda H. April 16, 2010
I'd say 2 weeks.