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Tuesday, May 3, 2016

Ramp Season is Here!

Some love them, some hate them, some don't have a clue what they are, some just think the hype is overblown.  Me?  I rather enjoy the ramp.  It's a little oniony, a little leeky, a little garlicky.  The window of opportunity to get them is very brief in the spring.  This year with my ramps I decided to make some ramp risotto.

Start with a big old bunch of ramps.

They are actually easier to clean than a leek and you can use the whole thing, green and all.  Clean them up, chop them up and add them to the pot you cook your risotto in with 3 Tablespoons of olive oil (extra virgin if I'm making it) and a Tablespoon of unsalted butter.  

Saute for about 5 minutes.... no browning really is required here, you just want to start to soften the ramps.  After the 5 minutes, add a cup of Arborio rice (or any other short grain risotto rice you prefer).  And stir it into the ramps for 2-3 minutes, coating the rice in the oil/butter.  To that add a half cup of white wine.  Stir until the wine is absorbed.  

Then it's business as usual in the risotto game.  Add a ladle-ful of broth to the pot and stir until completely absorbed.  Then add another, doing the same stirring game each time.  One cup or rice should use about 4-5 cups of liquid.  You can use water, but why do that if you can use broth?  You don't have to make your own, unless you want to.  Use a good quality store bought broth (I pretty much exclusively use Kitchen Basics).  

It's getting there...

Sorry about the steam!

Keep adding and stirring....

I said above to stir broth until completely absorbed and that's what most recipes for risotto will say. But I have found this to be a little less than true.  I have stopped stirring when I make risotto.  Not for long stretches, but I don't continually stir the whole time.  In fact when I was making this yesterday I was also making a salad at the same time.  So broth added, stir it for a minute, go cut some cucumbers, come back and stir until absorbed.   Same thing with tomatoes for the salad, etc.   You really shouldn't stop for long stretches, which I don't, but a minute here and there, I have found to not be an issue.  

When the rice will no longer accept another drop of broth, it's time to stir, cook and let it thicken up a little.  You don't want it stiff, but I don't like my risotto like porridge either.  No soupy risotto please!   It should be soft and creamy.  At the end of the cooking, add half a cup of Parmesan cheese and before you know it, it's done!   

I was rather fond of this ramp risotto.  I think I'll make it again next Spring!   
Mangia!  :)


Vagabonda Reads said...

Looks yummy!

judy said...

Looks really good and I appreciate the tutorial! Always enjoy this blog. Thank you