Vichyssoise? Yes. Loaded baked potato soup? Mmm hmm...
WILD RAMP SOUP? Oh, yes! The color of this Springtime soup is a bright green because of the ramp leaves that are incorporated. If you are lucky enough to find these garlicky delights, you are fortunate indeed. I think they are in season for all of about 10 minutes....
Hardly anyone even knows what they are where I live. They look like green onions with a purplish colored stem with 2 leaves that resemble long spinach leaves. This is a SPRING SOUP! Although, the day I made it- there was a freak snow storm and I ended up with about 5 inches of snow in my yard. My friend nicknamed it Leprechaun Soup. —Miss_Karen
slices of bacon
ramp bulbs. Separate off the leaves, roughly chop, set aside
Rinse the ramps in cold water. Remove the roots. Cut the ramp leaves off and set aside. Chop the ramp bulbs and the stems. Chop the onion.
In a large skillet or Dutch oven, fry the bacon until crispy, remove from the pan, crumble and set aside. Pour off all but 2 TBSP. of the bacon grease. Add ramp bulbs, stems and onions.
Sauté on medium-low heat until the vegetables are tender. Add the broth and the potatoes. Simmer until the potatoes are tender.
While the potatoes are cooking; stack the ramp leaves together and roll the leaves up tightly (sleeping bag style.) Then slice (Chiffonade) or roughly chop.
Put the Half & Half into a 2 cup glass measuring cup. Add the ramp leaves. Use an immersion blender to puree the leaves and cream. Blend until smooth.
* Don't use a food processor. It heats up the leaves and you will lose the pretty color.
Stir the cream mixture into the soup. Add the cheese. Heat thoroughly without boiling. Add salt and pepper to taste. Garnish with the reserved bacon, more cheese and chives- (optional)
Serve hot or cool to room temperature, cover, and chill thoroughly to serve cold as you would a vichyssoise.
Serve with crusty artisan bread or the Ramp Chimichurri Challah bread (pictured.)