Make Ahead

Sweet & Spicy Pickled Ramps

April 24, 2010
Author Notes

The ramp is a vegetable that needs to be treated like two dishes in one plant. I chop off the leaves just below the greenery and immediately saute them in a hot pan with a touch of olive oil. They puff like jade-green blimps, and they're a fantastic side dish for steak. The stems and bulbs have a different destiny... inside a mason jar. This easy pickling recipe is based on a brine I learned from Chef Cardoz of Tabla, and it's great when used to pickle anything from cauliflower to red onions. Although the ramps are terrific in savory cocktails, we usually chop them and throw them on sandwiches or in salads. - MissGinsu —MissGinsu

Test Kitchen Notes

Ramps make for terrific condiments, and it turns out, a terrific pickle. Here the sweet pickling liquid eases their feisty onion flavor and the spices hang in the back, there to support and nothing more. If you have a bunch of ramps and 10 minutes to spare, you can have a plentiful jar of ramp pickles at your fingertips. - A&M —The Editors

  • Prep time 72 hours
  • Cook time 15 minutes
  • Serves 1 quart jar
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 2 cups white wine vinegar
  • 1 teaspoon yellow mustard seeds
  • 1 teaspoon fennel seeds
  • 2 teaspoons coriander seeds
  • 1/2 teaspoon fenugreek seed
  • 2 pieces dried red chili peppers
  • 1/2 pound ramp bulbs (with stems)
In This Recipe
  1. Wash the ramp bulbs very well, discarding any loose membrane around the bulb. Make sure the leaves and any root material is trimmed away.
  2. Mix sugar, vinegar, mustard, fennel, coriander, fenugreek, chilies and cloves in a suitably sized pot. Bring to a boil.
  3. Meanwhile, put the ramp bulbs into a clean, sanitized glass quart jar.
  4. When the brine comes to a boil, carefully pour it into the jar, covering the ramps. Leave at least 1 inch of space at the top of the jar, then cap tightly, allow to cool and refrigerate for three or more days.
  5. After three days, your ramps should be ready to enjoy on their own or as a condiment, but you can brine them for longer, and they'll keep (chilled) for months.
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