Community

Preview of Next Week's Themes

by:
April 23, 2010

Starting Sunday at midnight, you can submit recipes for Your Best Rhubarb and Your Best Ramps.

 

34 Comments

WinnieAb April 28, 2010
Ok I am in business. Successfully foraged for ramps in the woods of a friend's home today!
 
MrsWheelbarrow April 28, 2010
Ages ago, when I was in college (when the dinosaurs walked the earth), I attended the Ramp Festival in Helvetia, West Virginia. It was a relatively unknown festival - but a few of us in Pittsburgh made the weekend roadtrip every year. You could smell the ramps from miles away, as you approached the small town. The party never stopped the entire weekend, and the whole town smelled of raw ramps, much stronger than garlic. (My roommates were horrified by the stench when I returned to school.) People dressed as ramps, ramps cooked and canned were for sale, there may have been some alcohol involved, and at the end, there was a big sit down dinner sponsored by the Ladies Group - ham and cornbread and all sorts of canned good - and ramps ramps ramps. I always remembered this wild foraged ramp, but had such a different experience when I bought ramps at the farmers market two weeks ago. They were cultivated, and they were aromatic and charming, but really just a mere shadow of the wild one. So, if you love yourself some ramps, plan a late April trip to West Virginia for the real thing.
 
pierino April 28, 2010
As you may already know, in Gilroy, CA they hold an annual Garlic Festival. The town's dark secret is that they don't grow enough garlic locally so most has to be trucked in from Fresno. Hard to be stealthy with a product like that.
 
dymnyno April 28, 2010
Pierino...you're right about Gilroy's dark secret. But, back in the dark ages when I went to college in nearby San Jose we often made trips to Carmel via Hwy 101 which ran through Gilroy. The whole town smelled like garlic at certain times of the year. Unfortunately where garlic used to grow there are now housing developments. The whole valley was endless fields of tomatoes, garlic, prunes and other produce that have become developments, just as the former orange groves of Southern CA have also been civilized.
 
pierino April 28, 2010
I think I know just about every mile of Hwy 101 between Santa Barbara and Salinas. But to dymnyno's comment, when my family first moved to California there were orange groves in the neighborhood and I loved the smell of the blossoms at night. Development run rampant took that all away. Gilroy does though, produce my favorite hot sauce, "Pepper Plant: Original California Style". Skip, their line extension products e.g. chipotle. The original is the best if you can find it. OH, OH! We've missed the off ramp.
 
aletta April 28, 2010
I am going to sit next to my rhubarb plant and encourage it to grow a little bit faster so I can try out all the wonderful recipes. By the way; rhubarb is very easy to grow. Just a very large container, some compost and lots off tlc will do. And in 4 or 5 years you can cut the plant in 3 parts and give 2 of them to friends. Than the do not have to ask you for some eco friendly, non-sprayed, delicious rhubarb. <br /> <br />
 
Veronica April 27, 2010
Yikes--closing in on the deadline and haven't found "really fresh" of either ingredient--still 2 1/2 days to go...
 
pierino April 27, 2010
I can tell you where to find the worst ramps. Wrigley Field in Chicago if your seat is on an upper tier in early April. The higher you climb the worse the "lake effect" gets.
 
Sodium G. April 26, 2010
No joke, dreamt about ramps last night. I've never even eaten them nor have I found them in my Cali farmer's markets yet. But clearly, this contest is on my mind. Hope to get my hands on some (real) ones soon.
 
Amanda H. April 27, 2010
We are infiltrating your dreams. A-ha -- the spell we cast on you is working.
 
dymnyno April 26, 2010
Whole Foods in California carries ramps at some locations (like Napa). Otherwise, we are pretty ramp-less. Even Monterey Market shook their heads when I asked. They are very good...a real "in" item at some restaurants. However, I think that they are waaay overrated!
 
pierino April 27, 2010
I saw ramps at Whole Foods as well but the leaves looked rather disappointing so I passed. Advantage here to East Coast. Not too many weeks left, maybe we'll encounter another regional specialty like abalone, or conch, or alligator....or kimchi tacos.
 
Amanda H. April 27, 2010
Ouch, that hurts, Pierino!
 
EverydayChampagne April 26, 2010
I have a half-eaten a Kiwi-Strawberry-Rhubarb Pie in the fridge from Saturday night...does that still count? :)
 
Amanda H. April 27, 2010
Sure, as long as you can tell us the recipe. :)
 
aargersi April 26, 2010
Good Morning from a warm, sunny and rampless part of the country ... I did a little searching and for you gardeners out there that want to give them a shot (next growing season which will be next spring) you can order seeds (long germination apparently) or instant gratification bulbs: http://www.rampfarm.com/catalog.htm <br /> <br />
 
Amanda H. April 27, 2010
Thanks for this link -- great.
 
chez D. April 25, 2010
Hello food52,<br /><br />I have a rhubarb recipe I'd like to submit, but I've never submitted a recipe on food52 and am not sure where it should go. Help.<br /><br />Thanks,<br />Denise
 
Merrill S. April 25, 2010
Hi Denise. Starting tonight at midnight, you can go to the home page and click on Enter a Contest in the top right module. The rhubarb contest photo and description will be there, and if you click on the "submit a recipe" button, you'll get a recipe submission form, which you can fill out and enter. Let us know if you have any trouble!
 
betteirene April 24, 2010
For whatever reason, ramps haven't spread this far west of the Rockies yet, but I've heard rumors that someone in Oregon has begun growing ramps for commercial sale. I'll just have to imagine what all your recipes taste like; please let us know if there's an acceptable substitute--like leeks--when you submit your recipes. <br /> <br />On the other hand, I happen to live in Sumner, WA, which is billed as the "Rhubarb Pie Capital." The capital of what--the world? U.S.? I don't know, but we sure have a lot of tartly-knit citizens in this city. Pucker up!
 
Merrill S. April 25, 2010
Can't wait to see your rhubarb submissions! I'm afraid we're really intent on recipes for ramps (although they're related to leeks and garlic, their flavor is truly unique). Apologies to all of the West Coasters out there!
 
NakedBeet April 24, 2010
Just found out what ramps were today, but have never cooked with either. Ooh, what to pick, what to pick....
 
Lizthechef April 23, 2010
MrsWheelbarrow, I keep telling you that my husband can spare me for a cross-country apprecticeship. I owe our marriage to a rhubarb pie - but I can't make crust- oy.
 
Amanda H. April 27, 2010
How about a press-in crust?
 
MrsWheelbarrow April 27, 2010
The press in crust in Amanda's Plum Tart is fantastic.
 
mtrelaun April 23, 2010
It's a total rampage on the East Coast! Until I moved here, I had no idea what ramps even were.
 
WinnieAb April 23, 2010
I can't seem to get my hands on either one where I live! Will have to "ramp" up the efforts in the next few days.
 
gluttonforlife April 24, 2010
Try foraging out in the woods--they tend to grow near streams!
 
Aliwaks April 23, 2010
YAY Ramps! Yay Rhubarb!
 
Amanda H. April 27, 2010
We feel the same way.
 
mrslarkin April 23, 2010
You're mind readers too? Wow, you guys are GOOD! I just finished making a batch of rhubarb jam today - seriously.
 
MrsWheelbarrow April 23, 2010
I made four rhubarb strawberry pies today. And I'm making jam tomorrow. Somehow I knew this might be rhubarb week.
 
Savour April 23, 2010
Oh man, IF you can find ramps in California, they cost a million dollars. Rhubarb, on the other hand, I can totally get behind.
 
Amanda H. April 27, 2010
But aren't we worth it? jk -- looking forward to your rhubarb recipe(s).